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£'UuAr 9//">-^ 


Satbacti ColUge Hibtat^ 



3 2044 097 039 895 







Stories of the States 


By J. A. C. Chandler, Superintendent of 
Schools^ Richmond^ Va. 


By J. Harris Chapell, Formerly President^ 
Georgia Normal and Industrial College, 


By Rockwell D. Hunt, Professor in The 
University of Southern California. 


By Jacques Wardlaw Redwat, F.R.G.S. 


By John Hugh Reynolds, Professor of 
History f University of Arkansas, 


By Henry Alexander White, Professor 
in Columbia Theological Seminary, S.C, 

Copyright, 1911, by 

Harvard University 

Dept of Education Library 

Gift of the Publishers 

riAY 16 19 



Paul Adams Hukt 


Llotd Freemak Hukt, 

natives of california the golden, 

this book 



In the preparation of this book the author has 
not sought to write a complete history of the great 
Coihmonwealth of California, but has endeavored to 
set forth, in simple narrative, the saUent features in 
the fascinating story of the upbuilding of the Golden 

Himself a native son of CaUfomia, bom of pioneer 
parents, he has long cherished the hope of seeing 
wider and deeper interest in State and local history 
taken by citizens of CaUfornia and especially by 
pupils in the schools. In adding this volume to the 
Stories of the States series, therefore, he has had 
constantly in mind the needs of that great army of 
boys and girls in our pubUc and private schools, 
whose lives should be enriched and ennobled by 
intelligent instruction in the history of our great, 
sovereign State. 

While it is earnestly hoped that the book will be 
of interest to that numerous constituency known as 
general readers, it has been more particularly de- 
signed for use as a textbook or as a supplementary 
reader in the upper grades of the grammar school. 

The author has been at much pains to insure 
accuracy of statement, directness of style and a 


just sense of proportion, as well as to add to the 
beauty and value of the book by collecting photo- 
graphs of marked excellence. He desires to acknowl- 
edge his indebtedness for many of the photographs 
to the Sunset Magazine of San Francisco and to 
Doctor Harold W. Fairbanks of Berkeley, and for 
photographs and cuts to The Grizzly Bear of Los 
Angeles. For reading and criticizing the manuscript 
it is a pleasure to make acknowledgments to Mr. 
James Ferguson of the San Francisco School Depart- 
ment and to Mr. J. D. Sweeney of the Tehama County 
Board of Education. Thanks are also due to a col- 
league, Professor Katherine Forrester, for assistance 
in the preparation of the Pronouncing Vocabulary; to 
the Century Company for permission to use brief 
extracts from magazine articles; to Mr. George W. 
Hazard for his copyrighted facsimile signatures of 
the members of the Constitutional Convention of 
1849; and to the many other friends who by words 
of encouragement and kindly cooperation have ren- 
dered assistance in the preparation of the volume 
now presented to the public. 

Rockwell D. Hunt. 

Lo8 Angeles f Calif omia. 



chaftbA paob 

I. From Columbus to Cobtez 1 

II. From Cortez to Cabrillo * 11 

III. California — The Laxd op Amazons and Gold . 19 

IV. The Mysterious Passage 24 

V. Sir Francis Drake and Don Sebastla.n Vizcaino 31 


VI. The Original Californians 41 

VII. The Jesuits in Lower California 53 

VIII. The Coming of the Franciscan Fathers ... 61 
IX. JuNiPERo Serra, Californian Knight of the 

Cross 71 

X. Padres and Neophytes: Life at the Missions . 81 

XI. The Downfall of the Missions 94 

XII. The Pueblo and the Presidio 103 

XIII. The Russians in California 113 

XIV. The Romantic Days of Hispano-California . 120 


XV. A Prize and a Policy 133 

XVI. The First Overland Immigrant Train .... 139 

XVII. John A. Sutter and New Helvetia 152 

XVIII. The Story of the Ill-fated Donner Party . . 162 
XIX. John Charles Fremont and the Bear Flag 

Revolution 169 

XX. The American Conquest of California . . . 178 





XXI. "Eureka!" — The Discovery of Gold. . . . 187 

XXII. El Dorado: The Days of '49 199 

XXIII. William Lewis Manly, Hero of Death Valley. 210 

XXIV. The Great Need of Organized Government. 221 
XXV. The First California Constitution 229 

XXVI. The Empire State of the Pacific 237 

XXVII. At the Diggings: Miners' Life in Early Cau- 


XXVIII. Baptism by Flood and by Fire 256 

XXIX. The San Francisco Vigilance Committee OF 1851 264 

XXX. The Great Vigilance Committee of 1856. . . 273 


XXXI. Building the Pacific Railroad 283 

XXXII. Standing True in Time of Peril 297 

XXXIII. Invasion of the Chinese: "The Chinese Must 

Go!" 305 

XXXIV. A New State Constitution for California 315 
XXXV. California and ^* Manifest Destiny " .... 323 

Appendix 343 

Pronouncing Vocabulary 348 

Index 353 



Map of California (Col- 
ored) Frontispiece 

The State Capitol at Sac- 
ramento . . Facing page 1 

Columbus 1 

Queen Isabella 3 

Coat of Arms of Columbus 4 
Lands which Columbus 

Discovered 5 

Magellan 7 

A Map that Columbus 

Studied 8 

An Early Map of the New 

World 12 

A Spanish Ship 15 

Old Monterey Cypress . . 16 

Monterey Bay 17 

Map showing Straits of 

Anian 26 

Gatim Dam, Panama 

Canal 29 

Sir Francis Drake .... 32 

Cypress Point 35 

Avalon Bay, Santa Cata- 

lina 36 

Map showing Explorations 38 

Indian Papoose 41 

A Basket Weaver .... 42 
An Indian of Northern Cali- 
fornia 45 

Indian Wikiups 48 


Indian Granaries in Yo- 

semite 49 

Primitive Life in Califor- 
nia 60 

Mission Concepcion ... 67 

St. Francis of Assisi ... 62 
Don Nicholas A. Covarru- 

bias as Portold .... 65 

Father Serra 68 

Mission San Diego ... 70 

Statue of Father Serra . . 72 
The Stanford Monument 

to Junipero Serra ... 74 
Signature of Father Serra . 75 
Carmel Mission ..... 77 
Arches, Mission San Mi- 
guel 79 

The Palms, Mission San 

Fernando 81 

Rear Arches, Mission San 

Juan Capistrano ... 83 

Mission San Luis Rey . . 84 
Fountain at Mission Santa 

Barbara 86 

Mission Santa Clara. . . 88 

On the Sacristy Stairs . . 91 

Missal Pages 92 

San Miguel Mission ... 95 
Map showing location of 

the Missions 96 

Belfry, Pala Mission ... 100 




Ruins of Arches^ San Luis 

Rey Mission 102 

Old Adobe House .... 106 

" Little Cannon " .... 109 

A Fur Trader 113 

A Native Grizzly .... 114 
Old Greek Chapel, Fort 

Ross 118 

Map of New Spain ... 120 
A Spanish Caballero . . . 125 
Native Califomians Lasso- 
ing a Wild Bear. ... 128 
A Home in Hispano- 

America 130 

Group of California Big 

Trees 131 

Cattle at Rancho Chico . . 134 

On the Edge of the Desert 138 

JohnBidwell 140 

Bu£Faloes at Golden Gate 

Park 143 

A Representative of a By- 
gone Race 144 

A Caravan en Route to 

California 147 

In the Sierras — The Her- 
mit 149 

Captain John A. Sutter . . 153 

Remains of Sutter's Fort. 155 

Sutter's Fort 157 

In the High Sierras . . . 164 
Blue Canon in the Sierra 

Nevada . 167 

John C. Fremont .... 169 
The Bear Flag of Califor- 
nia 176 

Custom House at Monte- 
rey 181 

Map showing Mexican 

Cessions 184 

James Marshall 187 

Log Cabin Among the Big 

Trees 190 

A Modem Prospector . . 194 
"Westward the Course of 

Empire Takes Its Way " 196 

Inside a Mine 20O 

A Prairie Schooner . . . 203 

Store in a Mining Camp . 207 

WiUiam Lewis Manly . . 211 

Death Valley 213 

The Mohave Desert . . . 215 

Mount Shasta 225 

Yosemite Falls 227 

Colton Hall, Monterey. . 230 
Relief Map of CaUfomia . 232 
Signatures to the Constitu- 
tion 235 

Seal of Califomia .... 237 

Hon. Peter H. Biunett. . 239 

WilUamM.Gwin .... 240 

Slavery Map, 1850 ... 241 

"Struck it at Last!" . . 249 

Washing Gold 251 

A Modem Gold Mine . . 253 

Jacob P. Leese 259 

A Modem View of San 

Francisco 262 

Seal of San Francisco . . . 263 

Sam Brannan 266 

Seal of the Great Vigilance 

Committee 276 

William T. Coleman ... 277 

Fort Vigilance 279 

Stagecoach Travel in Cali- 
fornia 285 



Old Engine — C. P. Hunt- 

Where the Raihoad Pene- 
trates] the Rocky Moun- 

The Last Spike .... 

Overland Limited . . . 

Leland Stanford . . . 

A Group of Chinese Resi- 

Scenes in Chinatown. . 

Senator Stephen M. White 

Court House, Fresno 

Court House, Stockton 

Casino, Santa Cruz . . 





John C. Calhoun .... 326 
Lick Observatory .... 328 
A Combined Harvester . 332 
Chester Place, Los Angeles 334 
Oil Wells at Sunderland . 336 
An Orange Grove in South- 
em California .... 337 
The Inner Quadrangle, Le- 
land Stanford Junior Uni- 
versity 339 

Scene on the Campus, Uni- 
versity of California' . . 340 
College of Liberal Arts, 
University of Southern 
California 341 



tjaiuonua is a cnua ot apam. 
In discovery, early exploration, and colonization 
Spain was the pioneer nation of the New World. 
In Europe she was without an equal among 
nations; in America her opportunity was match- 
less. " They were Spaniards who first saw and 
explored the greatest gulf in the world; Span- 
iards who discovered the two greatest rivers; 


Spaniards who first knew that there were two 
continents of America; Spaniards who first went 
around the world ! " 

The Discovery by Christopher Columbus. — When 
on the twelfth day of October, 1492, Columbus, 
his heart beating fast with emotion, landed from 
the Santa Maria upon Watling, one of the eastern- 
most of the Bahama Islands, he was firm in the 
beUef that he was on the outskirts of Asia. Grate- 
ful to God and true to his mission, he reverently 
knelt on that new-found shore while in prayer he 
returned thanks to Heaven; then he took formal 
possession of the country in the name of King 
Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain. 

Columbus Uved more than thirteen years after 
this illustrious event, and died at last without the 
knowledge that he had discovered a great, new 
hemisphere. But this ignorance does not detract 
from the splendor of his achievement or dim the 
luster of his name. His discovery of America 
was one of the greatest events in history. Poetic 
imagination had long pictiu-ed vast unexplored 
regions in the distant west. Vague stories were 
told of fabulous voyages by Arabs across the 
Atlantic and by Chinese across the Pacific. The 
sagas of Iceland gave accounts of discoveries by 
the Northmen as early as the tenth century. 
But to Coliunbus belongs the glory of realizing 


vague beliefs, of settling doubts about the shape 
of the earth, and of linking together the Old World 
and the New. 

Vasco da Gama's Trip to India. — To gfun the wealth 


of India had become the desire of European nations. 
As the art of navigation rapidly improved with the 
coming of modern times, the hope of reaching the 
Far East by water was greatly heightened. While 
Columbus was seeking for Spain the Northwest 


Passage to India, Vasco da Gama, by going in the 
opposite direction, was discovering a Southeast 
Passage for Portugal. In 1498 he succeeded in 

turning the Cape of Good 

Hope and reached the goal. 
When he returned to Por- 
tugal, his ships bearing 
spices, silks, ivory and 
precious stones, aud his 
heart filled with a bound- 
less hope, no one could 
doubt that he had indeed 
been to India. 
Columbus bent every en- 

OOAT or ABua of coluhbob „ , 

ergy to %nd some strait 
leading into the Indian Ocean from the Caribbean 
Sea, and because he failed his reputation suffered 
severely. His last days were spent in sickness and 
poverty, and he died (1506) in the belief that, while 
he had not reached the mainland of Asia nor dis- 
covered its wealth, he had really found the shortest 
route to India. 

Spain Renews Her Efforts to Reach bidia. — The ex- 
travagant notions held in Europe about the wealth 
of India would not let the Spaniards rest until they 
should try every means of reaching the heart of 
that country, which they longed to explore and . 
conquer in the name of their sovereigns. Now 


that Vasco d& Gama had shown that the wealth of 
the Orient could be reached by sea, and Columbus 
had proved that land could be reached by sailing 
west, Spain was spurred on to renewed rfforts to 
discover the great highway of the Pacific. 

The idea that America was really a neW world 
began to prevail. Even before Columbus died 

many were convinced of its truth, and before long 
the belief in the great Western Hemisphere was 
firmly rooted. Nevertheless it was many years, 
and even generations, before the real character of 
America became known and Europe learned the 
actual size of the "South Sea" or Pacific Ocean. 
Those hardy navigators through whose explora- 
tions the outlines of our continent gradually became 
known will ever be remeiiibered with gratitude 


by the people who have enjoyed the fruits of their 

Balboa Discovers the Pacific. — Vasco Nunez de 
Balboa, a Spaniard of most adventurous spirit 
even from his boyhood, was made governor of a 
small colony on the Isthmus of Darien. There he 
heard vague reports of a sea to the southwest; 
accordingly he set out in 1513 to prove the truth 
of these rumors. For nearly three weeks he 
pressed forward, fighting his way through dense 
forests tangled with great vines, encountering 
hostile tribes of Indians, and climbing over steep 
and rocky hills under a tropical sun, until at length 
he called a halt at the foot of a mountain peak. 
Bidding his men remain behind, he eagerly scaled 
the final height, and what a splendid reward was 
his for persevering in the exhausting march! Alone 
he stood and beheld the glittering waters of the 
broad Pacific. Never before had the eyes of a 
white man rested upon that inspiring scene. 

Quickly joined by his heroic comrades, Balboa 
descended with unspeakable joy to the beach. 
Then under the banner of Castile, armor-clad, he 
waded into the waters, and raising aloft his naked 
sword, he solemnly took possession in the name of 
Spain of the wide ocean and all the shores it might 
touch. This great discovery, made ninety-four 
years before Captain John Smith landed at James- 


town and one hundred and seven years before the 
Pilgrim Fathers set foot on Plymouth Rock, has 
been ranked next in importance to the great dis- 
covery by Columbus. Like his illustrious prede- 
cessor, Balboa afterwards met with ill fortune, and 
was at last beheaded on a charge of revolt. 

The discovery of the Pacific added greatly to the 
Spaniards' desire to reach India by water. Many 
zealous attempts were made to find a passage 
through Panama and Central America, but alas! 
no such passage was ever found. 

Magellan Explores tbe Pacific Ocean. — The first 
explorer to enter the Pacific was Fernando Magellan, 
who in 1520 sailed through 
the straits that now bear • 
his name, on the famous 
expedition that went round 
the world. Magellan was 
a Portuguese in Spanish 
service, and he it was who 
gave the Pacific Ocean 
its name, as with proud 
heart he entered its ap- 
parently placid waters. 
After months of perU on 
unknown seas he reached 

the group of islands now so well known to us as 
the Philippines. As if piu*sued by the same cruel 


fate that had overtaken Columbus and Balboa, 
Magellan was killed on one of these islands, and 
thus never permitted to enjoy the fruits of his 
remarkable discoveries. But his companions sailed 
round the Cape of Good Hope and at last reached 
their home land in 1522, after an expedition lasting 
eleven hundred and twenty-four days. 

The dotted line* «h< 

There could no longer be a doubt as to the shape 
of the earth — - it had been circumnavigated. For 
the first time the East Indies had been reached by 
sailing west. In all history there have been few 
expeditions more wonderful than this under Magel- 
lan, or more important in their results. Indeed, 
Dr. Draper has called it " the greatest achievement 
in the history of the human race," 


Hernando Cortez Conquers Mexico. — While Magel- 
lan's ships were plowing the untried waters of 
the Pacific, brave Hernando Cortez was conquering 
Mexico. Mexico had for a long time been inhabited 
by the most powerful people in the New World. 
They possessed a high degree of courage and had 
made considerable progress toward real civilization. 
Soon after the discovery of this interesting country 
by Grijalva, Cortez had been intrusted with its 
conquest: he accordingly sailed from Cuba, which 
had already been claimed for the crown of Spain, 
in the month of November, 1518. 

Cortez was a member of a noble Spanish family. 
He had sailed to San Domingo early in 1504, and 
there, after several well-merited promotions, had 
earned the reputation of a model soldier. He was 
one of the world's greatest explorers and conquer- 
ors, and was yet to render valiant service for 

Mexico and Her People. — Landing on the coast of 
Mexico, March 4, 1519, Cortez founded the settle- 
ment of Vera Cruz (True Cross) on the site where 
to-day stands the city of that name. The simple- 
hearted natives were utterly astonished, and it is 
not surprising that many of them thought the 
Spaniards were gods. Mexico was not a real em- 
pire, as many have supposed, but it was a kind of 
complex democracy with a military government, and 


with a social and political organization like that of 
the Pueblo Indians of the present day. The great 
" palaces " of the war chief s, about which so many 
marvelous stories have been told, were in reality 
only huge habitations made of adobe. Religion was 
a leading factor in the life of these semi-civilized 
Aztecs, and clustering about the religious system 
were a great many traditions and superstitions. 

The Founding of New Spain. — Cortez had an army 
of about seven hundred men; with this small force 
he was to conquer a great country. Could he suc- 
ceed? Having set fire to his ships, so that retreat 
would be impossible, he began his famous march 
through the wilderness into the heart of Mexico. 
Because of his surprising skill as a general and his 
personal bravery, the campaign was one of great 
vigor and brilliancy. He took Montezuma, the 
most powerful of the war chiefs, prisoner, made 
friends of many of the tribes, discovered rich mines, 
and made himself master of the vast, new colony. 
Emperor Charles V rewarded him from Europe with 
the commission of Governor and Captain-General of 
all Mexico, or New Spain, as it was then called. 

But it is Cortez's connection with California 
that is of chief interest to us; and now, at length, 
we are ready to trace that thrilling story. 



Explorations Prompted by Lure of Gold. — Strange 
stories of northern lands came to the ears of 
Cortez; and since there were tales of unlimited 
wealth and treasure, the Spanish Governor of 
Mexico was not slow in deciding to explore those 
unknown regions. The most powerful motive with 
many of the Spanish explorers was admirably 
expressed in a remark which Cortez is said to have 
made to some native Mexicans: " We Sp^^niards 
are troubled with a disease of the heart for which 
we find gold, and gold only, a specific remedy/' 
The gold and precious stones, which he hoped to 
find lying about as common as pebbles, lured 
Cortez and many another Spaniard into enter- 
prises filled with incredible hardships, . leading the 
fortunate few to lasting fame, but many more to 
defeat and to unknown graves. 

Cortez Plans Expeditions. — At his own expense 

Cortez ordered four ships to be built at Zacatula, 

but before they were ready for the sea a fire broke 

out, and in a few hours everything was in ruins. 

The brave man was not discouraged. 



But SO great were the difficulties ot securing 
suitable materials for new ships in southern Mexico 
and 80 serious were the other obstacles which he 
encountered, that it was five years more before 
bis four ships were launched, and even then the 
orders of the Emperor prevented three of them 


from carrying out the intention of the Governor. 
So it was 1528 when the smallest of the four set 
sail alone from Zacatula under command of Pedro 
Nunez Maldonado, who had been superintendent 
of the shipyard. 

Maldonado's Discoveries. — Maldonado entered 
upon an exploring expedition of six months, pro- 


ceeding slowly northward along the coast and care- 
fully surveying the shores. But he only reached 
the Santiago River^ which is many leagues south of 
the extremity of Lower California. Nevertheless 
he had made a good start toward the norths and, 
better yet, he brought back glowing accounts of 
the fertile soil he had found and of the great abun- 
dance of precious metals of which he had heard. 
Under such circumstances CaUfornia could not long 
remain undiscovered. 

Two new ships were completed. The command 
was given by Cortez to Diego de Mendoza and 
Juan de Mazuela, who left Acapulco in June, 1532. 
But terrible mutiny, Indian massacres and fierce 
gales caused this expedition to end in failure and 

The intrepid Cortez promptly ordered yet two 
more ships to be built with all haste. These sailed 
the next year from Tehauntepec under command 
of Captains Mendoza and Grijalva: but encounter- 
ing a storm the second night out, Grijalva was 
driven far out to sea and thus separated from Men- 
doza. They were never reunited. 

Lower California Discovered. — Grijalva sailed about 
three hundred leagues and discovered a desert 
island, which he named Santo Tomas. But it is 
Mendoza's ship. La Concepdon, that should be 
specially remembered, because it carried the dis- 


coverers of California. The commander himself 
was killed by mutineers, but his chief pilot, For- 
tuno Ximenez, took charge, directed his ship away 
from the coast, and, crossing the unknown waters of 
the Gulf of California, discovered the interior coast 
of tower California in 1534, or late in 1533. It is 
possible that one of the earUer expeditions had 
come within sight of this land: but California,, 
thought then to be an island, was made known 
to the world through the expedition of Ximenez 
in his good ship La Concepdon, belonging to 

It is doubtless disappointing to be reminded that 
this was not California at all, the Golden State in 
which we take so much pride, but only Baja (Lower) 
Cahfornia, so inferior in every respect to Alta 
(Upper) California, the land of our great Common- 

How then did our fair land come to be discov- 
ered? Events hastened. Cortez rendered still fur- 
ther service by personally discovering Santa Cruz 
Bay, by carefully surveying and naming the penin- 
sula of California, and by breasting the waters of 
the North Pacific. He was a brave soldier and a 
fearless sailor, a patient explorer and an enterpris- 
ing conqueror. So it is all the more sad that he 
failed at last to find the gold he had spent a fortune 
in seeking, and that his moral weakness brought 


him to ruin after his heroic sacrifices and splendid 

TJUoa's Explorations. — Francisco de Ulloa deserves 
much credit for having skirted the eastern shore 
of Lower California and then having sailed up the 

outward coast, proving the country to be a great 

Discovery of Alta California. — We come at length 
to the illustrious name of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. 
It was the twenty-seventh day of June, 1542, when 
with two ships under his command he sailed from 
Navidad under the authority of the Viceroy of 
New Spain. Quickly reaching Santa Cruz, he pro- 


ceeded thence along the interior coast until August 
20, when he passed Cabo del Engano (Cape of 
Deceit), now called Cape Bajo (Low Cape). At 
length, with some misgiv- 
ing but with high hope, be 
entered the northern waters, 
on which Spanish vessels 
bad never sailed. Near 
the end of September he 
passed the Coronado Is- 
lands, entered the beautiful 
San Diego Bay and there 
enjoyed with his brave men 
a well-deserved rest. Thus 

to Cabrillo, another Portu- 

OLD MOKTERET CTPRB88 gucsc uavlgator in Spanish 
service, belongs the distin- 
guished honor of the discovery of Alta California, 
" being the first white man, so far as we have any 
positive information, who laid his eyes or placed 
bis feet upon its soil." - — Hi'ttell. 

After exploring several of the islands near the 
coast, Cabrillo continued in a northwesterly course, 
the voyage being full of interest and important 
discoveries. About the middle of November be 
reached Point Pinos (Point of Pines). Rounding 
this cape he sailed directly into the now world- 
renowned Monterey Bay. The heavy sea prevented 


his landing; so onward he pressed to the north until ' 
he came almost in sight of the noble harbor of_San 
Francisco. But he was not permitted to discover 
that magnificent port: the stormy weather of early 
winter and gloomy prospects in unknown waters 
turned him away. Having returned to the Santa 
Barbara Islands, he died January 3, 1543, and was 
succeeded by his pilot Bartolom4 Ferrelo. 


Ferrelo's Eipeditioii. — Ferrelo, after sorrowfully 
burying his dead commander and wisely waiting 
till the severity of winter was broken, obeyed a 
last order of his sufierior, and with favoring winds 
from the south made all haste to continue the 
exploration northward. On the last day of Feb- 
ruary he discovered and named Cape Mendoza, 


now Cape Mendocino. Speeding on before the gale 
he came in sight of Cape Blanco, in south Oregon, 
on the first of March. But now the low state of 
his provisions and the chilling weather compelled 
him to turn again with reluctance toward the 

Ferrelo deserves much credit for having so suc- 
cessfully carried out the orders of his dead com- 
mander, which led to his exploring the coast up 
to the present boundary of Oregon. But it is to 
the great Cabrillo himself that the honor must be 
given for the discovery of our western coast line, 
the coast that now fittingly marks the bounds of 
our glorious Union of States. Few navigators 
deserve higher tribute than Cabrillo, who gave 
himself a sacrifice to the cause he cherished. 



Ancient Stories of Amazons. — It is to the illus- 
trious Cortez himself that we owe not only the 
important discoveries along the Pacific coast but 
also the name by which our great state is known — 
the name California. 

Whence came this name? For what reason was 
it bestowed upon the newly found country? 

The first account that we have of " California " 
is a fanciful picture of a wonderful island abound- 
ing in gold and precious stones and inhabited by 
Amazons. Amazons figure in many a tale that is 
much more ancient than this one. Even as far 
back as the Greek mythology there are stories 
about a race of warlike women who would not 
permit men to dwell among them. 

The story of the Amazons of California comes 
to us from a celebrated romance entitled " The 
Deeds of Esplandian, the Son of Amadis of Gaul," 
which was published in Spain as early as 1510. 
It is a charming fairy tale: 

"Know, then, that on the right hand of the Indies there is 
an island called California, very close to the side of the Terres- 



trial Paradise, and it was peopled by black women, without any 
man among them, for they lived in the fashion of Amazons. 
They were of strong and hardened bodies, of ardent courage and 
great force. The island was the strongest in the world from its 
steep rocks and great cliffs. Their arms were all of gold, and so 
was the harness of the wild beasts which they tamed and rode. 
For, in the whole island, there was no metal but gold. ... In 
this island, called California, there were many griffins, on ac- 
count of the great ruggedness of the country and its infinite 
host of wild beasts, such as never were seen in any other part 
of the world. . . . Every man who landed on the island was 
inmiediately devoured by these griffins.*' 

Calafiai Queen of the Amazons. — The queen of 
this wonderful island of California, whose name was 
Calafia, was very black, 'Wery large in person, the 
most beautiful of all of them, of blooming years, 
and in her thoughts desirous of achieving great 
things, strong of limb and of great courage, more 
than any of those who had filled her throne before 

After much fighting, in an alliance with the 
pagans, at the head of her armed women and 
five hundred fire-breathing griffins, she was finally 
led to become a Christian. Then she sought from 
Emperor Amadis a comely prince to be her husband. 
The romance" ends with this tantalizing statement : 

"What happened to them afterwards I must be excused 
from tellmg, for they passed through many strange achieve- 
ments of the greatest valor, they fought many battles, they 
gained many kingdoms, of which, if we should give the story, 
there would be danger that we should never have done." 


This thrilling romance, " most fictitious of fic- 
tion/' was the novel of Cortez's day. To read it 
was the style for Spaniards of those times. In it 
the name " California " occurs three times, referring 
to the island of fable, where precious stones were 
like the stones of the field for abundance, and gold 
was the only metal. It is certain that the early 
Spanish explorers were in search of fabulous wealth 
and that they entertained wild fancies about the 
wealth of eastern Asia, which they believed to be 
near Mexico. It was these strange notions of yet 
stranger lands that led to the discovery of the real 

New Region Named California. — But why was 
the name of Calafia's Amazon island given to the 
barren shores of Lower CaUfornia? Nobody knows. 
If brave Cortez could have viewed the beautiful 
gardens that Nature had planted in Alta CaUfornia, 
and could have known of the untold wealth of gold 
that Providence had bestowed upon this fair land, 
the explanation would be clear and plain. But 
Upper California was wholly unknown to the Span- 
iards when the name was given, and its vast riches 
were a profound secret even to its native Indians. 

It may be that there were rumors of gold in that 
territory even in those early days. The natives 
of Mexico were the occasion of the Spaniards en- 
countering many a peril and many a hardship by 


their weird stories of gold in the far northland. Or 
it may be that the sailors, growing discontented and 
almost mutinous because of their sufferings and 
gloomy prospects, were skillfully put in better 
spirits and greatly encouraged by Cortez when he 
gave the name of the fabulous land of gold to 
that land of little promise. In such a time much 
depends on a name. That of California, as an omen 
of wealth, might have been given for the same 
reason that a pioneer names his new frontier home 
*' Eden," or a lonely rancher calls his home " Para- 
dise Valley.'' It helps to screw up the courage and 
to strengthen the forlorn hope. Visions of unlimited 
gold floated like a charm in that magical name 
'' California.'' 

Meaning of the Name CaUfomia. — Learned merv 
have tried hard and long to find the true meaning 
of the word, but after all their labors it still remains 
in doubt. The name is thought by some to conv^ 
from the Greek language; others think it is Latin; 
and still others think it is Spanish or Indian in origin . 
Every one may take turns at guessing ; but we are 
most likely to be correct if we guess that nobody 
will ever find out for certain precisely what the 
name California does mean, or just why the name 
was applied to the barren shores of the southern 
peninsula. It seems very reasonable to think that 
the name was derived from the Spanish words mean- 


ing "a hot oven," or "a fiery furnace;" but in the 
absence of the actual record we may make a thou- 
sand guesses, and they will be only guesses still. 

This much is certain: the beautiful name and 
the land that bears it so proudly are both our own. 
The hardy Spanish explorers wrought for another 
people. They were not permitted to gather the 
golden harvest of their patient planting. We 
Americans, their successors, have realized their 
most alluring dreams. Upon us rests the obliga- 
tion of guarding well their priceless legacy — Cali- 
fornia the Golden. 



Mystery of the Northwest Passage. — The achieve- 
ment of Columbus, great and splendid as it was, 
did not solve the mystery of the Northwest Pas- 
sage. Little by little the character and extent 
of the New World were being made known, but 
great truths are revealed only to minds and 
hearts that are prepared for them. Complete 
knowledge can be reached, if reached at all, only 
after the price is paid — the price of toil and sac- 
rifice and waiting. 

How the Spaniards longed and labored to find 
the fabled passage from the Atlantic to the South 
Sea! Balboa's discovery of the Pacific and Magel- 
lan's discovery of the Philippine Islands caused 
many navigators that came after them to redouble 
their energy in the zealous search for the supposed 
passage, called the Straits of Anian. 

Belief in the Straits of Anian. — Of the existence 
of the Straits there appears to have been for a long 
time no shadow of a doubt in the minds of men. 
They were reported as first discovered by a Portu- 
guese, named Caspar Cortereal, in the year 1500. 



Everybody believed the report, partly no doubt 
because it was so pleasant a thought. Their re- 
discovery became the object of diUgent and re- 
peated search from the side of the Pacific as well 
as from the Atlantic. This was one of the objects 
of the Cortez expeditions. " All explorers who 
desired to add glory to their names searched for 
the mysterious passage; and many returning ad- 
venturers on the high seas professed either to have 
seen the strait, or else to have sailed through it.'' 
— Blackbiar. 

Lorenzo de Maldonado's False Reports. — Some 
of these bold explorers, whose keen imaginations 
far outran the limits of strict truth-telling, pro- 
fessed to trace the course of the channel to the 
smallest details, drawing maps of crooked windings 
and indented shore lines. Andres de Urdaneta 
was one of these. But the chief offender in this 
phantom chase was Lorenzo de Maldonado, who 
pretended that in 1588 he had sailed from Portugal 
to Labrador, then westward through the Straits of 
Anian to the Pacific, and back again to the Atlan- 
tic! His report showed every crook and turn and 
was so complete and ingenious that when it came 
to light nearly two centuries after Maldonado's 
death, and long after it had been positively proved 
that such a passage had no real existence, several 
learned Frenchmen announced themselves believers 



in the old stories, and the whole subject was again 
opened for public dispute. 

Supposed Location of the Passage. — The ques- 
tion as to just where the supposed strait was 
located was much discussed, and the answer was 
full of uncertainty and not at all satisfactory. 
Some thought it was south of Mexico; but it 
came to be the general belief that it must be some- 
where north and not south of Mexico. This shows 
how vague and mysterious the whole matter really 

Certain papers that were deUvered to King 
PhiUp II of Spain give remarkable particulars of 
the course of some foreigners who were driven by 
storm from Newfoundland, and passed to the 
South Sea by the Straits of Anian, '' which lie 
beyond Cape Mendocino." There can be no doubt 
that bold navigators closely examined the coast 
line of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Hudson's Bay, 
BaflEin's Bay and many rivers on the Atlantic sea- 
board in the vain hope of sailing westward to the 
Pacific. It is equally certain that Puget Sound, 
the great gulfs and inlets of the Northwest Terri- 
tory and southern Alaska, and in fact the entire 
western coast of America, were carefully explored 
in the great search for the Northwest Passage to 
India. With a modern map of our wide continent 
before us it now seems almost laughable to imagine 


ocean-going vessels sailing majestically up the 
Hudson or the James or the Potomac, their com- 
manders gravely keeping an expectant lookout 
for the far-oflf Pacific. But the queer scene must 
be tinged with an element of pathos, and there is 
a spirit of real heroism in the picture. Spain was 
especially zealous in her efforts along the Pacific 
coast, for she feared that some rival nation might 
secure the prize. 

Indirect Benefits from the Search. — As the search 
went on year after year, at the cost of many 
expeditions and the sacrifice of untold human 
Uf e, the phantom strait continued ever to retreat 
into the mists and to baflfle the bravest and best 
sailors. Yet their labors were not in vain. Their 
own keen desires were not to be gratified, but they 
did succeed in laying open vast regions of rich 
but hitherto unknown country for occupation 
and settlement, and they greatly extended men's 
knowledge of the earth. They builded for later 
generations; they wrought well for advancing 

Explorations of Vitus Bering. — In 1728 Vitus 
Bering sailed into the Arctic Ocean through the 
strait that now bears his name. He was a Danish 
navigator in the service of Russia, and had been 
sent out by the farseeing Czar, Peter the Great. 
It was only natural that some should make it appear 


that Bering Strait was really the Straits of Anian; 
but a larger number believed that the mysterious 
passage was associated with Admiralty Bay, which 
is a branch of Puget Sound extending far inland. 

Copyright bs Undeneood A Undennood, If. T. 


The Northwest Passage Never Found. — It must 
be admitted that the Northwest Passage, which 
was the object of much honest searching for several 
centimes, has not been found to this day. But 
Cahfomia and the other great states along the 
Pacific have Itmg since been fully explored through- 
out their length and breadth. A wonderful net- 


work of railroads and telegraph wires binds aU 
closely together; and now at last the marvelous 
Panama Canal, by connecting Pacific and At- 
lantic and so bringing the Orient almost face to 
face with the Occident, will splendidly play the 
part that was to have been taken by the myste- 
rious passage. 



Long Period of Inactivity in Exploration. — What 
a long, long time it was from the discovery of 
Alta California till the first real settlement within 
its borders by white persons! Two hundred and 
twenty-seven years passed wearily by from that 
September day when Cabrillo sailed proudly into 
San Diego Bay before Captain PortolA and Father 
Serra succeeded in making a permanent settlement 
on the shores of that selfsame beautiful harbor. 

During all these years the wide-reaching interior 
of Golden California remained an unknown land. 
There was indeed but little found out about even 
the coast line. But it would be a great mistake 
to suppose that the inviting land was ever wholly 
forgotten. Many vessels, bearing flags of differ- 
ent nations, sailed along our western shores for 
greater or less distances, and princes of Europe 
never lost sight of their plans to colonize the 
country. Had they but understood how bound- 
less were its riches, the active work of settlement 
would have been begun much earUer and carried 
on far more rapidly. 



Sir Francis Drake. — Of the many early expe- 
ditions in the waters of the Pacific after the dis- 
covery of Alta California — it would be tiresome 
to recount them all — probably none was more 
important than that of 
Francis Drake, a daring 
British navigator, com- 
mencing in December, 
1577. With the personal 
assistance of his great 
sovereign Queen Eliza- 
beth, Drake set out with 
the purpose of plunder- 
ing any Spanish vessels 
he might overtake on the 
Pacific. Of the fiive ships 
that sailed forth from 
Plymouth only two passed through the Straits of 
Magellan, the others having deserted Drake. One 
of the two remaining ships was soon lost. The 
Pelican, or the Golden Hind as she was thence- 
forth called, alone pointed her bows toward the 
north Pacific, bearing the intrepid captain and 

Much booty was taken from ship and port. 
From a single Spanish ship at Panama there were 
seized, as Drake himself tells us in his record, 
" besides fruit, sugar, meal and other provisions, 


eighty pounds' weight of gold, thirteen chests of 
silver coin, twenty-six tons of unrefined silver and a 
quantity of jewels, plate and precious stones.'' And 
this was but one of his many captures. 

The Golden Hind now being laden with plunder, 
Drake feared to return to Europe through the 
Straits of Magellan lest indignant Spanish cap- 
tains lying there in wait might seize his ship and 
make him prisoner. So onward he sailed to the 
north, hoping he might discover that mysterious 
passage, the Straits of Anian, and thence return 
in safety to the Atlantic and home. 

Discovery of Sir Francis Drake Bay. — Like others 
both before and after his time, he sailed by the 
beautiful Golden Gate without dreaming that just 
within lay one of the world's finest harbors. On 
and on sped the Golden Hind until Drake had 
reached the latitude of southern Oregon, where 
Cabrillo's pilot Ferrelo had been a generation 
before him. The bad weather, bitter cold and 
a leaking ship compelled Drake to turn again 
toward the south. On June 17, 1579, he came 
to anchor in *' a convenient and fit harbor " near 
Point Reyes, where he remained for more than 
a month, repairing and refitting his vessel. For 
many years it was generally believed that this 
anchorage was made in San Francisco Bay, but 
it is now well known that the Golden Gate had 


not been entered, and that the place of shelter 
sought was what is known to us as Sir Francis 
Drake Bay, at a distance of about thirty miles to 
the northwest of San Francisco. 

New Albion. — Drake became deeply interested 
in the native Indians he found, and they in turn 
looked upon him as a superior being, paying him 
royal if not divine honors. He called the country 
"New Albion" and claimed it for England. Before 
taking his departure from the harbor that had 
proved such a boon, Drake, thinking himself to 
be the real discoverer, set up a large post, upon 
which was nailed a brass plate engraved with the 
name of England's great queen, the date, the sub- 
mission of the natives and his own name. Then 
he made ready to leave Alta California. 

Still fearful of the Spanish at the south, he 
determined to circumnavigate the globe and return 
home by way of the Cape of Good Hope. On 
September 26, 1580, after an absence of nearly 
three years, he arrived at Plymouth, the starting 
point. The world had been encompassed by this 
daring and briUiant EngUshman. 

Spain Renews Explorations. — PhiUp III, the new 
king of Spain, was not at all willing to have the 
Spanish captains in the Pacific any longer run 
the risk of being plundered by Drake and other 
EngUsh privateers. He therefore gave orders in 


the year 1599, shortly after coining to his throne, 
directing the Viceroy of New Spain (Mexico) to 
search the coasts of the CaUfornias diligently, at 
public cost, for a safe and secure harbor, in which 


ships from the Philippine Islands might find pro- 
tection and on whose shores a town might be 

Don Sebastian Vizcaino. — The result of the royal 
decree was that Don Sebastian Vizcaino sailed 
from Acapidco in the good ship San Diego, followed 
by two others, on May 5, 1602. This proved 
to be one of the most memorable voyages in Cali- 
fornia history, especially so because later genera- 
tions felt so dependent on Vizcaino's records as a 
guide to further explorations. 


Proceeding slowly and carefully surveying the 
important points, it was six months before Viz- 
caino entered San Diego harbor, where Cabrillo 
had been just sixty years before. San Diego Bay 
was found to be an excellent and beautiful harbor 
as well as a very large one; but its full value to 
California and the world was not understood for 
many generations after Vizcaino's visit. 



Santa Catalina, the lovely island which Cabrillo 
had discovered and named Victoria, was next 
visited by Vizcaino. Further information gained 
concerning the Indians there and their strange 
habits and manner of life proved exceedingly 
interesting. Little did Don Sebastian dream, as 


he entered and named San Pedro Bay, of the 
marvelous improvements and active commercial 
life that were to be added thereto at a later day by 
the hands of a new and powerful people. 

In Monterey Bay. — The event that proved to 
be the most important of this memorable voyage 
occurred on December 15, when Vizcaino's ship 
rounded Point Pinos and sailed into Monterey Bay. 
On landing, the Te Deum was chanted under a 
great tree, long known as the Oak of Vizcaino, the 
spreading branches of which were said to overhang 
the beach. 

The captain and his men carefully noted the 
aspect of the country about Monterey — its great 
pines and aged oaks, its pleasing hills and lovely 
dales. They were impressed with the great abun- 
dance of wild game of all kinds, from the grizzly 
bear whose footprints were nine inches broad and 
the elk whose antlers measured three yards across, 
to the myriads of geese, ducks and quail. 

Vizcaino's Expedition Ended. — On January 3d, 
1603, sails were again spread, and this time Cape 
Mendocino was the object of search. The point 
was reached; but the storm king raged furiously, 
and the earth could not be seen for heavy mists 
that had settled down. For days Vizcaino was 
almost at the mercy of the gale. 

At length, on the twentieth of January, the 



weather cleared as Cape Blanco appeared in sight. 
But alas! the crew were in a sorry plight from scurvy 
and other complaints. . Brave Don Sebastian was 
compelled to turn toward the south, as Ferrelo 

and Drake had done. Two 
months later he was thank- 
ful to reach Acapulco alive. 
The stanch old captain 
was not disheartened; he 
had ^'a heart for striving 
against the tempests and 



calms of the sea.'' So after making a full report 
of his explorations to the Viceroy, he begged an 
opportunity to return to California with sufficient 
equipment to make there a permanent settlement. 


But such opportunity was not to be his: by the 
time -King Philip had been persuaded to give a 
tardy assent to fitting out a new expedition, Viz- 
caino found himself too old and worn out by toil 
and' infirmities to undertake its leadership. "With 
him were buried all prospects for the carrying out 
of the design he had done so much to encourage 
and promote." 

Inactivity in Exploration after Vizcaino. — For more 
than three-quarters of a century no Spanish ex- 
pedition of importance visited California. Indeed 
more than a hundred and sixty years passed before 
the dream of Vizcaino for a permanent settlement 
in Alta California was realized in the founding of 
the mission of San Diego. The famous voyage of 
1602, however, long stood as a landmark, beckon- 
ing the way; and explorers of later generations 
placed much dependence on the report of Sebastian 





The Native Races of America. — The native races 
of America were called Indians because of the 
mistake Columbus made in 
thinking he had reached the 
outlying East Indies, when in 
reality he had discovered the 
New World. The scores of 
nations and tribes of red men 
represented a great variety 
of culture, but not one tribe 
of them all was entitled to 
be called civilized in the full 
sense of that word. Even 
the Aztecs of Mexico, the 
Pueblos of New Mexico, indian papoose 

and the IncM of Peru, races 
formerly believed to be highly civilized, were in 
reality only barbarians. They might build houses 
of adobe, or even stone, cultivate corn, domesti- 


cate animals; they could weave baskets to perfec- 
tion and make beautiful works of pottery; perhaps 
some had even learned the process of smelting 
iron and of writing by means of rude-symboUc 

I BABSXT whavkb 

pictures: but in spite of all this none had dis- 
covered a true alphabet based upon sound and 
none knew the use of written composition. 

Aborigines d Lower California. — In the scale of 
culture we find the native Indian of Lower Cali- 
fornia almost at the very bottom. These wretched 


people were among the lowest, most degraded and 
brutish races of savage humanity. Father Venegas, 
the Jesuit historian who saw them in their rude 
native state, used these words to describe them: 

"The characteristics of the Californians are stupidity and 
insensibility; want of knowledge and reflection; inconstancy, 
impetuosity and blindness of appetite; an excessive sloth and 
abhorrence of all labor and fatigue; an incessant love of pleasure 
and amusement of every kind, however trifling or brutal; the 
utmost extent of their desires is to get the present day's food 
without much fatigue, taking Uttle care for that of the ensuing 

They were truly a people that never arrived at 
manhood. What wonder, then, tha|) those early 
Jesuit missionaries, though zealous and devoted, 
made such a sUght impression, working as they 
did in a land of poverty and barrenness for the 
uplift of a people who seemed scarcely above the 

Many Tribes of Alta California. — California is now 
known far and wide for the great variety of its 
productions. In an earlier day it supported more 
numerous tribes of Indians than any territory of 

like area in America. These tribes differed consid- 


erably from one another in their mode of life and 
in their peculiar traits, and still more widely from 
the Eastern tribes of red men. Yet all belonged 
to one great family — the North American Indians. 


Unlike the Red Men of the East. — To the real- 
istic Indian of California the idea of the Great 
Spuit was wanting: he looked forward to no Happy 
Hunting Ground in the after world. " For the indo- 
lent Californian, reared in his balmy clime, knows 
nothing of the fierce joy of the Dakota hunter, 
but believes in a heaven of . . . ease and luxury." 
— Powers. The genuine copper color and haughty 
countenance, marked by aquiline nose and bold 
forehead; the gayly-feathered calumet, the far- 
famed tomahawk and the hideous display of gory 
scalp-lock — these marks of the noble red men of 
the East were almost wholly wanting among the 
dusky sons of California. 

Incorrectly Called ."Diggers." — These Indians have 
been called " Diggers." But it is neither just nor 
reasonable to apply this term of reproach and 
contempt to the numerous tribes of CaUfornian 
Indians, diflfering so widely from one another. 
" ' Diggers ' was at first probably applied to a small 
tribe of root eaters or root diggers, and afterwards 
quickly extended to apply to many tribes in different 
localities and made a synonym of everything low and 
degrading." The term is as unjust as " Rat eaters " 
would be if applied to Chinamen. And besides, 
there were certain tribes, as the Apaches, who Uved 
more on roots than did the Indians of California. 

Tribes of Northern California. — The tribes in the 


northern part of Alta California, lacludii^ the 
Klamaths, Modocs, Shastas and many others, 
were in every way superior to those to the south- 
ward. They were described as "tail, muscular, 
and well made, with a com- 
plexion varying from nearly 
black to Ught brown, in pro- 
portion to their proximity to 
or distance from the ocean or 
other large bodies of water; 
their face is large, oval and 
heavily made, with slightly 
prominent cheek bone; nose 
well set on the face and fre- 
quently straight, and eyes . . . 
keen and bright. The women *" ikdiam 
are short and some of them 
quite handsome, even in the Caucasian sense of the 
word"." — Bancboft. 

Cmtral Califomians. — In central California there 
were innumerable httle bands of Indians, but no 
marked division into large tribes. Valleys like 
Napa and Sonoma probably contained six or more 
of those httle tribal bands. One pioneer tells 
us that at the San Francisco mission alone nine- 
teen different languages were spoken by the Indian 
converts. The central CaUfornian knew no regular 
form of industry, had an extremely rude dwellil^, 


and lived a life very low in the scale of cidtiire. 
In times of plenty he was exceedingly lazy. Indeed 
for many of the men life was continual idleness, 
" lying stretched out upon the ground, doing abso- 
lutely nothing, roaming about from hut to hut, 
playing, dancing or sleeping." 

Southern Calif omians. — As we approach the south- 
ern boundary of Alta California we observe a shght 
improvement over the central Californians. In 
the south the people, with small exception, seem 
to have been more expert in the manufacture of 
various articles. Children were more systematically 
instructed arid aged persons more highly venerated. 
All took the greatjest delight in the dance. 

Indian Dress. — The dress of the CaUfornia Indian 
was most primitive and with a majority of tribes 
very scanty. A kind of loose wrapper thrown round 
the waist was usually the only garment. An otter 
or deer skin was often added in the winter time. 
In some instances a close-fitting skirt was plaited 
or woven with the feathers of water-fowl so as to 
give a downy surface on both sides. In the 
warmer plains and valleys the women had (mly 
a short apron made of rushes or tules, while it 
was quite common for the men and children to 
go entirely without clothing. In the colder hours 
of a wintry day, however, many had the habit of 
plastering themselves over with mud in order to 


keep out the cold; this mud they washed off as 
the temperature rose. 

Ornamentation. — The CaUfornian was fond of 
ornaments. Tattooing the body was much in favor, 
and this was practiced more by women than by 
men. The most valued ornaments included bits 
of carved wood worn as earrings, strings of shell 
beads and bands of feathers bound around the 
head. The tail feathers of the golden-winged wood- 
pecker, the large black feathers of the eagle 
and the crests of the mountain quail were much 
sought after and highly prized. A band of wood- 
pecker feathers might number five hundred indi- 
vidual feathers: and when we remember that but 
two of these can be obtained from one bird, we 
understand why the labor and time of collecting 
them gave the ornament its high value. 

Wlages and Dwellings. — Most tribes of the original 
Californians dwelt in comical little houses called 
vrikiups, which were usually shaped like a bowl 
turned upside down. A large number of these rude 
dwellings grouped together on the bank of some 
stream formed a village, or rancheria. A very large 
rancheria, such as the one where the town of Placer- 
ville now stands, might contain in all ten hundred 
or twelve hundred Indians. 

The assembly chamber of the rancheria was 
called the temescal. This odd structure, which may 


also have answered the purpose of the village bath- 
house and medicine room, was in almost every 
instance situated near the brink of a stream 
of running water. It was partly underground; 
shaped like a great inverted bowl, built of strong 
poles and branches of trees heavily plastered with 
mud, and so completely closed as to be almost 
air-tight. Here the council of the men was held; 
here the sick were treated by the medicine man or 



Food. — Food there was in great variety, and 
usually in great abundance. While their diet 
consisted chiefly of many kinds of roots, berries 
and seeds, many varieties of game were also used, 
and sometimes great quantities of fish were eaten 


— for in fishing the Indians showed both skill and 
patience. Acoms were a staple; pine nuts were a 
general favorite; grasshoppers and young yellow- 
jackets were toothsome delicacies. The Indian's 
cunning instinct also taught him the use of the 
snare and the pit in capturing larger game, such 
as the deer and the antelope. Not being over- 


particular in bis tastes, Nature spread for him a 
table laden witb a great variety of food. 

Pi^iulation. — It is believed that at one time, before 
the coming of the white men, more than seven hun- 
dred thousand Indians dwelt in the land we call Cali- 

PRiumvi: ura ik caufornia 

fomia; a denser population, without doubt, than 
any like area of North America supported. Wild 
and ignorant savages as they were, they lived a 
life of simple happiness as they dwelt undisturbed 
in their land of sunshine and plenty. Though 
they knew not the Great Spirit and the Happy 


Hunting Ground, they were a religious people. 
Nature itself was the Indian's God, and the coyote 
was his favorite minister. 

An Indian Legend. — A single interesting legend, 
typical of many, is here given as reported " from 
the lips of one of our most venerable pioneers." 

" There was once a time when there were no human inhabi- 
tants in Catifomia, but there were two spirits, one evil, the other 
good. They made war upon one another, and the good one 
overcame the evil. At that time the entire face of the country 
was covered with water, except two islands, one of which was 
Mt. Diablo, the other Reed's Peak. There was a coyote on 
the peak, the only living thing there. One day the coyote saw 
a feather floating on the water, which, as it reached the island, 
suddenly turned into an eagle, and spreading its broad pinions 
flew upon the mountain. Coyote was much pleased with his 
new companion, and they lived in great harmony together, 
making occasional excursions to the other island, coyote swim- 
ming while the eagle flew. After some length of time they 
counseled together and concluded to make Indians; they did so, 
and as the Indians increased the waters decreased, until where 
the lake had been became dry land. At that time what is now 
known as the Golden Gate was an entire chain of mountains, so 
that you could go from one side to the other dry-shod. There 
were at this time two outlets for the waters; one was Russian 
River, the other San Juan, at the Parkado. Some time after- 
wards a great earthquake severed the chain of mountains, and 
formed what is now known as the Golden Gate. Then the 
waters of the Great Ocean and the Bay were permitted to 
mingle. The rocky wall being rent asunder, it was not long 
before the 'pale faces* found their way in, and, as the waters 
decreased at the coming of the Indians, so have the Indians 
decreased at the approach of the white man, until the war- 


whoop is heard no more, and the council fire is no more lighted; 
for the Indians, like shadows, have passed silently away from 
the land of the coyote and the eagle." — H. B. D., in Hesperian^ 
SeptembeTf 1859. 

Fate of fhe California Indians. — The fate of the 
CaUfomia Indians has indeed been most pathetic. 
Whole tribes were swept out of existence by the 
more degraded and immoral class of whites, or 
"bad whites," who first invaded their native haunts. 
There remains to-day only a pitiable remnant of 
the once populous race that flourished all up and 
down our rolUng hills and fruitful valleys. In the 
stern march of progress the native Indians of Cali- 
fornia have given way to the all-conquering Aryan 
race, and their home of beauty and of luxury has been 
made to yield its ample resources, multiplied under . 
the hand of civilization, to another and higher race. 



Slow Progress in Exploration. — Exploration and 
colonization on the Pacific coast of North America 
went forward for a long time much more slowly 
than on the Atlantic side of the continent. The 
principal reason for this was that the Atlantic 
Ocean is the natural approach to our continent 
from Europe, while to reach our western coast 
meant great and added danger. Numerous preci- 
pices and headlands were threatening; terrific and 
unfamiliar storms frowned upon the mariner; and 
the great moimtain wall always so near the shore, 
with few and uncertain harbors of safety, was far 
from inviting. 

The peninsula of Baja or Lower CaUfornia had 

been discovered in 1534, but it was not until 

Vizcaino's voyage of 1602 that steps were actually 

taken to colonize the land. The very ease and 

rapidity with which Peru and Mexico had been 

conquered took away the liking for the necessarily 

slow and laborious subduing of this new country. 

The Spanish captains sought immediate results 

from their expeditions. In their desire for gold 



they did not take the proper sort of equipment 
for true colonization; and in their haste to grasp 
a fortune the conquerors sadly wasted the meager 
resources that they had. So discouraging were 
the many fruitless efforts that as late as 1686 it 
was thought to be out of the question to carry on 
the conquest of California. 

Work of the Missionaries in Colonization. — But 
there is a brighter side to the picture. What 
could not be done by the hardy conqueror, who 
often had low aims and loose morals and who was 
too likely to treat the savages with cruelty, was left 
for the church to accomplish. 

In the occupation and settlement of California 
the missionary element was well-nigh all important. 
Among pioneer missionaries as among no other 
class of men are to be found sublime faith, trust- 
ful simplicity and truly heroic labors. " No desert 
was too frightful for them, no danger too appall- 
ing. Alone, unarmed, they traversed the most 
forbidding lands and braved the most deadly 
savages, and left in the lives of the Indian such a 
proud monument as mailed explorers and conquer- 
ing armies never made/' — Lummis. 

Aid of the Jesuits Invited. — It was decided to 
ask the Jesuits to assist in the spiritual conquest 
of California by establishing missions. The Jesuits, 
or Society of Jesus, had become a strong and very 


active body of Christian workers. This spiritual 
army of the Roman Catholic Church organized and 
carried forward a system of missions throughout the 
whole world. During the sixteenth and seventeenth 
centuries its labors were witnessed in India, China, 
Japan, both coasts of Africa and a large part of 
central Asia, as well as in both North and South 

EfiForts of Fathers Kino and Salvatierra. — The first 
offers of the Spanish court to the Jesuits proved 
unsatisfactory and so were rejected. Then Father 
Kino earnestly set to work in behalf of the enter- 
prise, seeking to win the favor of influential per- 
sons. Juan Maria Salvatierra was deeply moved 
by his appeals and was soon joined with him heart 
and soul in the missionary enterprise. Salvatierra 
has been called " the person chosen of God to be 
the apostle of California." He possessed a large 
frame and a strong constitution, and he was intrepid, 
sagacious, kind and gentle. 

After several unsuccessful attempts to secure the 
necessary license, these zealous missionaries applied, 
almost disheartened, directly to Santa Ella, the 
Father-General of the Society of Jesus, who had 
just arrived in Mexico. The desired license was 
soon issued, the Viceroy and his counselors looked 
with favor upon the cause, and liberal subscriptions 
began at once to pour in for carrying on the work. 


On the fifth day of February, 1697, the royal 
charter was granted, fully authorizing Fathers 
Salvatierra and Kino to take possession of Cali- 
fornia and to settle it' in the name of the King 
of Spain. 

The Mother Mission Founded. — The location for 
the mother mission was selected and named Loreto 
from the patroness of the proposed conquest. The 
provisions being landed, the garrison built, the 
temporary chapel raised, and the garlanded crucifix 
erected before it, the procession solemnly marched 
from the ship and with suitable ceremonies took 
formal possession. Thus on the twenty-fifth day 
of October, 1697, was the reUgious conquest of 
Lower California begun by Padre Salvatierra, a 
great, courageous, large-hearted man and a willing 
exile from the highest European circles, who gave 
up kinship, luxury and congenial society in order 
freely to devote his life to the well-being of the 
ignorant and degraded natives of a land that seemed 
little better than a barren waste. 

But the innumerable difficulties arising from 
troubles with the Indians, the want of provisions, 
and the indifference of the Spanish government 
were appalling. The devoted Fathers stood faith- 
ful through it all, and brighter prospects dawned 
when Philip V became Ejng of Spain. 

The real purpose of the missions of Lower Cali- 


fomia, as set forth by their representatives, was 
the instruction of the natives in the truths of 
Christianity and in the arts of civilized life. 

A Chain ctf Missions Established. — In October, 
1699, Father Piccolo laid the foundation of the 


second mission, San Francisco Xavier, and the 
system was fairly begun. The successful estab- 
lishment of a chain of Christian missions in such a 
land as Lower California, in the face of incredible 
hardships and repeated disasters, all for the sake 
of bringing salvation to one of the most degraded 
peoples in all the world, was itself a momentous 


achievement. Of this great work Kino was the 
projector, Salvatierra the founder and Ugarte the 

Kino's splendid design included carrying a 
system of missions around the head of the Gulf 
of California so as to unite the centers on the 
CaUfornian peninsula with those of Sonora, and 
then extending the line northward as far as the 
almost unknown Cape Mendocino. What a bold 
idea it was! But neither Father Kino nor any of 
his brother Jesuits was ever permitted to see it 
reaUzed. The good man wore out his life with 
toilsome service, and laid it down at last, in 1710, 
for his fellow men. 

Father Ugarte Upbuilds the Missions. — Though Sal- 
vatierra was " the apostle of California " and the 
leading founder of the Jesuit missions there, the 
chief glory of preserving the missions from early 
destruction belongs to Father Ugarte. He was 
the Hercules of the Society of Jesus. Going to 
Loreto, he found the men dissatisfied and the 
establishment deserted. Alone he set to work to 
upbuild the mission. He planted gardens and 
orchards, raised many horses, cattle and sheep, 
cultivated fields, and reaped abundant harvests. 
He even made distaffs, spinning wheels and looms. 
His strength was indeed Herculean, his talents 
great and many, his spirit dauntless; '' an ad- 


mirable man, as God liveth, well worthy of im- 

Destruction of the Southern Missions. — The Indian 
converts had become weary of the restraints laid 
upon them by their missionary teachers, who op- 
posed their savage practices, prohibited their bloody 
wars and strove to correct their habits of idleness 
and shiftlessness. As a result a spirit of rebellion 
arose and spread rapidly among the tribes, until 
the whole southern country was ready to break 
out in strife and bloodshed. When the rebelUous 
spirit at length burst forth into fierce flames of 
revolution, the four southern missions were utterly 
destroyed, and Fathers Carranco and Tamaral were 
foully murdered. As a result the outside settle- 
ments were promptly given up, and word was sent 
to Spain of the desperate condition of afifairs. 

Restoration of the Missions. — But the poor de- 
pendent Indians soon came to realize their loss 
in the sudden withdrawal of their teachers, to 
whom they had come to look for food and clothing. 
It was not long before the missionaries were urged 
to return. Finally the missions were rest9red, and 
once more progress and prosperity reigned among 
the Jesuit padres. 

Expulsion of the Jesuits. — In the midst of the 
new prosperity and revived hopes, the political 
movements against the Jesuit Society in Europe 


were beginning to threaten the very existence of 
that order. In 1759 the Portuguese government 
suppressed it and seized its property. A few years 
later similar action was taken in France. This 
was followed by the expulsion from every part of 
the wide dominions of Spain of all the Jesuits, by 
Charles III, on the grounds that they had conspired 
against th^ king and that treasonable writings 
had been found. The execution of this harsh 
decree in Mexico was committed to Caspar de 
Portold, and was set for July of 1767. 

After celebration of the last High Mass at Loreto 
and the farewell sermon by Padre Diez, the sad 
embarkation took place at Vera Cruz, on the 
thirteenth day of the following April, amidst much 
weeping and loud lamentation. " The poor sav- 
ages crowd about the departing padres for a bless- 
ing. How shall they console their grief? Who 
shall love and labor for them? Who shall teach, 
pray for them, and rear them step by step onward, 
to the high estate of a virtuous, enlightened and 
religious people? Alas! poor Indians! from this 
day onward you return to vice and fade away." 
— Farnham. 

Portold had shown much tact in the perform- 
ance of his disagreeable task, and now he turned 
over, the mission system of Lower California to 
the Franciscan College at San Fernando. 



The Franciscans Succeed the Jesuits. — For two 
generations had the devout Jesuit missionaries 
labored and suffered in the hard field of Lower 
California. Even in that desert land, where nature 
had done so little, they had made the rose to bloom 
and the vine to grow. After seventy years of 
patient toil, at an hour when Providence seemed 
smiling upon their earnest efforts, they had been 
suddenly expelled from their fifteen prosperous 

And now the Jesuit fathers having taken their 
departure, the Spanish government placed the 
missions, together with their entire government 
and unbounded opportunities for future conquest, 
in the hands of the Franciscan order of the Catholic 
Church. This brotherhood was very old, having 
been founded by St. Francis of Assisi in 1215. 
It was noted for its many works of charity and its 
great devotion to the higher interests of the people. 

The Franciscans were obliged to live on charity; 

they were denied earthly possessions, and were 

expected to carry the Gospel to all places no longer 




visited by the more wealthy clergy. It was 
thought by the government that these Franeiscan 
missionaries and those belonging to the society of 


the Dominicans would be more obedient to civil 
authority than the Jesuits. The missions of Lower 
California were at length placed in charge of the 
Dominicans, while to the Franciscans was assigned 
the great work of the spiritual conquest of Nueva 
or Alta California. 

Brighter Prospects in Alta California. — The Fran- 
ciscans began their labors under decidedly more 
favorable auspices than had the Jesuits. The 
character of the government itself had changed 
for the better. The new missionaries were en- 
couraged instead of being hampered by the powers 
at home. Best of all, the scene of their most 
active labors had shifted from sterile Baja CaU- 
fornia to fertile Alta California, which by compar- 
ison was indeed a land flowing with milk and 

As, long before, wild notions about the Amazons 
and the abundance of gold and jewels had led to 
the discovery and first explorations of California, 
so now, in a sense, the actual occupation of the fair 
northland by the Spaniards was accidental. The 
httle that was known about the country had been 
known ever since the famous voyage of Vizcaino. 
It had long been the purpose of Spain to explore 
and occupy the region sometime, but domestic 
troubles caused many delays. It was now the fear 
that the Russians might come down into Califor- 


nia from the northwest across the mysterious Straits 
of Anian that furnished Spain with the only new 
motive for undertaking the northern conquest. 

We have seen that Father Kino had looked for- 
ward to occupying the country as far north as 
Cape Mendocino; but the Jesuits had been hin- 
dered, and Alta California was really to them an 
unknown land. The Franciscans undertook the 
new enterprise with much zeal, eager to surpass 
the work already done and to carry Christianity 
to thousands of savages. 

Threefold Plan of Occupation. — From the stand- 
point of the Spanish government, a threefold plan 
was followed in the occupation and settlement of 
Alta California, comprising not only the religious but 
also the civil and miUtary forces. As the rehgious 
forces resulted in the founding of the missions, 
the military occupation was secured by means of 
presidios, or garrisons, and the civic life sprang from 
pueblos, or towns. 

Since Spain was chiefly concerned to add the 
wealth of these rich possessions to her own crown, 
caring less about the conversion of the Indians, it 
was evident from the beginning that the mission 
fathers could not always control the country nor 
hold their great establishments — buildings, lands 
and live stock — as missionary property. But it 
was natural that the padres should not clearly foresee 



that the entire control of the missions and their 
properties was finally to be taken from the church 
and given to the state. When this great change 
did at last come it proved a terrible ordeal to the 

Fear of the Russians. — It was in 1768 that the 
Viceroy of New Spain, or Mexico, received orders 
to occupy and fortify San Diego and Monterey as 
a defense against the Russians, who seemed to be 
threatening from the north. The great enterprise 
was intrusted to Jos6 Galvaez, Visitador-General 
of New Spain, a clear-headed, straightforward, en- 
ergetic man. Galvaez was to be aided by Captain 
PortoM, military and civil governor, commander 
of the military force at Loreto, and Junipero Serra, 
Father-President of the Franciscans. 

Colonizing Expeditions Arranged. — Plans were 
worked out for four expeditions to Nueva Cali- 
fornia, two by land and two by sea. Portold and 
Rivera were to conduct the land expeditions, and 
Juan Perez and Vincenta Villa were given command 
of the ships San Antonio and San Carlos. 

After long and careful preparation, everything 
being made ready, the flagship San Carlos was 
dispatched from La Paz, January 9, 1769, with 
sixty-two persons on board. Five weeks later the 
San Antonio set sail for San Diego. After another 
five weeks, on the twenty-fourth of March, the first 


land expedition left Santa Maria; but not until 
the fifteenth of May did Captain Portold and 
Father-President Serra start with the second, on 
that most eventful and important journey north- 

Difficulties of the Journey. — It may seem to us at 
this day that the journey from a Mexican port 
to the San Diego Bay is a very simple matter, 
free from extraordinary excitement or danger. But 
we forget the character of most of those pioneers, 
many of them poor, ignorant hirelings, and the 
fact that their captains were facing unknown waters 
practically without chart, in vessels none too sea- 
worthy; while their land captains were compelled 
to hew out a pathway through a country never 
yet frequented by the white man and in much of 
which " nothing abounds except stones and thorns.'' 
To be sure, the valleys seemed more delightful as 
they proceeded northward, and the rolling hills 
were crowned with grapevines and wild roses; but 
who can now understand the hardships, the trials, 
the acute suffering of that pioneer journey? Who 
can picture the gnawings of hunger, the tortures 
of thirst, the sufferings from the dreaded scurvy, 
endured by those wretched sailors, knowing not 
whither they went? The San Antonio lost eight 
of her crew by scurvy; nearly all the sailors of the 
San Carlos perished during her long and perilous 


voy^e. The third ship, sailing some time after- 
wards, never reached the harbor and was never 
heard of again. 

The other two ships sailed far to the north of 
San Diego, having been misled by the report of 
Vizcaino, and it seemed like a miracle that the 


San Carlos reached the harbor just as the San 
Antonio was about to put to sea again after eighteen 
days of anxious watching. 

On the fourteenth of May the land expedition 
under Rivera arrived, after a march of fifty-one 
days, and active preparations for setting up the 
mission were begun. On the first of July the last 


members of the second land expedition joined their 
comrades, and the four divisions were united. But 
alas! of the two hundred and nineteen persons who 
had started ninety-three were now found to be 

Birthday of Alta California. — Theodore Hittell, an 
historian of our Commonwealth, has suggested 
that July 1, 1769, might appropriately be com- 
memorated as the birthday of Alta California, 
since it was on that day that Junipero Serra and 
Portold came up and thus completed that note- 
worthy expedition which marked the entrance into 
this great, new land. 

Founding of Mission San Diego. — Then came the 
Sabbath day; and on that first Sabbath the one 
hundred and twenty-six pioneers of CaUfornia 
devoutly celebrated their arrival and safe preser- 
vation with a solemn mass and the booming of 
guns. A fortnight later, once more on the Sab- 
bath, Junipero Serra formally raised and blessed 
the cross, preached a deeply earnest §ermon to the 
simple-minded natives, and dedicated the mission 
to San Diego de Alcald. This was on the sixteenth 
of July, the day of the triumph of the holy cross, long 
celebrated in the Spanish church as the anni- 
versary of a memorable Christian victory over the 
Moors, won in 1212. 

Thus was broken the silence of the ages in Alta 


California. Once entered, that land was never to 
be forsaken by the Caucasian and the Christian, 
but was destined to develop into a mighty Common- 
wealth, pouring its golden treasure into the lap 
of the earth's most opulent nation. 





Father Serra's Early Days. — The baptismal name 
of the first Father-President of the Franciscan 
Missions of CaUfornia was Miguel Jos6 Serra. He 
was born of lowly parentage at the village of Petra, 
in the island of Majorca, November 24, 1713. 

* As a mere boy religious studies deUghted his 
mind, and very early he determined to devote 
himself to missionary work in the opening field 
of the New World. At the age of sixteen he 
became a professed Franciscan, taking on that 
important occasion the name by which he is best 
known, Junipero. This name he assumed in mem- 
ory of Juniperus, of whom St. Francis, his guide 
and companion, was wont to exclaim, '' Would 
that I had a whole forest of such junipers! " 

Preparation for Life Work. — Upon entering the 
Majorca convent Serra found three other young 
monks — Palou, Verger and Crespi — and among 
the quartet grew up an intimate and affectionate 
companionship, which never afterward waned. Serra 
became a professor of theology, and earned the title 
of Doctor; but his ardor for mission work was not 




in the least dampened by years of delay and the strict 
routine of the monastery. His soul seemed to be on 
fire with zeal, and New Spain was his goal. 

When at last in 1749 Serra and his companions 
received permission to join a company of mission- 
aries at Cadiz bound for Mexico, his very being 
seemed crowned with a halo of glory. After a voy- 
age that occupied ninety-nine days, the harbor of 
Vera Cruz was reached, and Serra proceeded to the 
College of San Fernando, eager to enter upon the 
great work of preaching and founding missions. For 
nineteen years he prosecuted his labors in Mexico 
with unflagging interest. But the great work of his 
life lay still before him. 

Preparations went forward for the occupation of 
Alta California. To Junipero, at the head of a 
band of sixteen missionaries, was committed this 
great work. Filled with deep emotion, unable to 
speak for his tears, he received his appointment as 
Father-President. All his life he had been pre- 
paring for just such an opportunity; and now at 
last, at the age of fifty-six, he embraced it with 
sacred joy and humble gratitude. 

Sena's Journey. — The thrilling story of the first 
expedition into Upper California has already been 
told. Although suffering severe pain from an in- 
flamed leg, Serra refused to go by sea, preferring 
to accompany one of the land expeditions and 


endure all the hardships of walking. His injury 
he had received a score of years before in making 
a long journey on foot. His friends now tried to 
dissuade him from walking. With his usual ardor 


he said "he would rather die on the road than 
not go, but that he should not die, for the Lord 
would carry him through." His painful wound 
he accepted as a cross to be borne, making no seri- 
ous attempt to cure it: and so to the end of his 
life he carried the diseased member, even allowing 
it to grow worse by going barefooted and walking 
long distances when he might freely ride. 

.}t ^uYitpmU^yL 


Junipero always regarded himself as under Heav- 
en's special protection. In his colossal labors he 
never grew weary; in his militant spirit and trium- 
phant faith he was unconquerable. 

We have the following picture of this man of 
mighty faith: 

"The face is one, once seen, never to be forgotten; full of 
spirituality, tenderness and unutterable pathos; the mouth and 
chin so delicately sensitive that one marvels how such a soul 
could have been capable of heroic endurance of hardship; the 
forehead and eyes strong, radiant with quenchless purpose, but 
filled with that solemn, yearning, almost superhuman sadness 
which has been in all time the sign and seal on the faces of men 
bom to die for the sake of their fellows." — H. H. Jackson. 



The Search for Monterey. — The overland party 
under Portold, which two days before the founding 
of San Diego Mission had set out to find Mon- 
terey, toiled on and on into the unknown north- 
land, and in bewilderment passed forty leagues 
beyond the harbor sought without suspecting it, 
realizing the mistake only after discovering San 
Francisco Bay. After months of weary wander- 
ing and hardship, winter now approaching, the dis- 
heartened travelers decided to retrace their steps, 
if possible, to far-oflf San Diego. It was January 
twenty-fourth when they reached the table-lands 
above the mission. They were indeed greeted with 
warmth and eagerness by their waiting companions. 

But alas! sorry was the plight of their comrades. 
Disease had been playing havoc; the Indians had 
proved treacherous; provisions had become so 
distressingly low that it seemed madness to think 
of remaining there longer. 

Sena's First Mission Saved. — Junipero was not 
disheartened ; bijfc in spite of his entreaties Governor 
Portold announced his intention of giving up the 
mission, and accordingly fixed March 20 as the 
last day he would wait for the supply ship from 
Mexico. Junipero would not assent to this plan, 
and brave Crespi stood by his leader. Many days 
and nights the Father-President spent in prayer, 
supplicating Heaven for relief. 


Lo, a sail far out on the horizon, seen before 
noon on that last, decisive dayl Was it a phantom 
ship, a mere specter? Ah, no — it was the good 
ship San Antonio; and four days later she sailed 
into port, bearing ample stores and cheering all 

hearts. The mission was saved. CaUfornia would 
yet be taken. 

Missdon Founded at Monterey. — New expeditions 
promptly set out in search of Monterey, Father 
Junipero himself this time sailing on board the 
San Antonio. And now his efforts were crowned 


with complete success. On the last day of May 
the heart of the faithful leader leaped with joy 
unspeakable as he beheld the beautiful green hills 
encircling lovely Monterey Bay; and on the third 
day of June formal possession was taken of the 
place in the name of the Church and of the King 
of Spain. 

" It was Pentecost day. The officers and men of the sea and 
land expeditions assemble mider a great oak near the shore. 
They erect an altar in its shade, hang bells on its branches and 
proceed with their services. They chant Veni Creator j conse- 
crate the water, erect and bless a grand cross, mifurl the royal 
standard, chant the Mass, and sing a Salve to the Virgin, whose 
image occupies the altar. . And after the Padre Junipero has 
delivered a pathetic discourse, a solemn Te Deum is simg to the 
Great Creator." — Farnham. 

With the founding of Mission San Carlos de 
Monterey the occupation of Alta CaUfornia was 
an accompUshed fact. The glad tidings sped on 
swift wings to every Spanish province throughout 
the world, and great was the joy in multitudes of 
devout souls. 

The Life Work of Serra Completed. — But for 
Junipero and his followers there were yet many 
years of struggle, hardship and heroic sacrifice. 
For him no difficulty was too great, no suffering 
too intense. His courage failed not in the face of 
dangers that would have appalled others; his sub- 
lime faith removed mountains of perplexity and 


inspired his loyal band. His one great passion was 
to baptize Indians; to feel that he had saved a 
soul from death always gave him unbounded joy. 
While standing in the pulpit his spiritual earnest- 
ness was most intense. He would sometimes beat 
his bared breast violently with a stone, or burn 
his flesh with a lighted 
torch, to heighten the 
effect of his descrip- 

Serra founded nine , 
missions in all, the last 
of which was San Bue- 
naventura, on March 
31, 1782. San Carlos 
was the special charge 
of the Father-President, 
and there it was he 
spent his time when he 
was not founding other 

missions or directing arches, yissioN ban mioukl 
the work in them. 

But his labors must cease. In 1783, at the age 
of seventy — being very lame and very feeble — 
he made the long journey on foot from San Diego 
to Monterey, visiting all intervening missions and 
not failing to turn aside into the scores of Indian 
villages to bestow comfort and sympathy upon the 


poor natives. On the afternoon of August 28, 
1784, the tolling of the mission death bell an- 
nounced to the grief-stricken people the departure 
of his heroic spirit. His most fitting eulogy was 
in the tears of his Indian converts, whose warmest 
love Padre Junipero, by his zeal and life-giving 
labors, had won and held to the end. 

In the midst of the sanctuary he loved so well 
Junipero Serra was bxiried. Beside his grave are 
those of his fellow missionaries. Fathers Crespi, 
Lopez and Lasuen. To-day the restored church 
stands as a monument over the grave of the fore- 
most character in the missionary history of Spanish 

" Such graves are pilgrim shrines, 

Shrines to no code or creed confined, 
The Delphian vales, the Palestines, 
The Meccas of the mind." 



Inqtortance of Mis^ons in California Histoiy. — 
Thomas Carlyle once said that the history of 
England is the history 
of her church. It may 
be said with equal truth 
of our fair western land 
that the history of His- 
pano-CaUfornia is the 
history of her Christian 
missions. The twenty- 
one Franciscan mission 
centera occupied the 
entire coast line from 
San Diego to Sonoma, 
the founders having 
shown much wisdom in 
selecting the most at- 
tractive sites. Alto- 

,1 ,.   , THE i>ALHS, inBSION 

gether their importance ^^j, fernando 

in occupying and holding 

the territory against invasion by foreigners — aside 
from the work of civilizing and Christianizing the 
Indians — would not be easy to overestimate. 



How a Mission Was Founded. — What was the 
method of founding one of these early missions? 
The routine, which was nearly the same in all 
cases, is thus given in the words of Helen Hunt 
Jackson : 

"A cross was set up; a booth of branches was built; the 
ground and the booth were consecrated by holy water and 
christened by the name of a saint; a Mass was performed; the 
neighboring Indians, if there were any, were roused and sum- 
moned by the ringing of bells swung on the limbs of trees; 
presents of cloth and trinkets were given them to inspire them 
with trust, and thus a mission was founded. Two monks were 
appointed to take charge of this cross and booth, and to win, 
baptize and convert and teach all the Indians to be reached in 
the region. They had for guard and help a few soldiers, and 
sometimes a few already partly civiUzed and Christianized 
Indians. Several head of cattle, some tools and seeds and 
holy vessels for the church service, completed their store of 
weapons, spiritual and secular, offensive and defensive, with 
which to conquer the wilderness and its savages." 

Architecture and Buildings. — The booths, which 
were made from the boughs of trees, gave way in 
time to the substantial and stately stone churches. 
Around these churches were grouped the many 
other buildings belonging to the mission. Viewed 
from the standpoint of architecture, all the missions 
were on the same general plan, but no two of them 
were exactly alike in their details. 

The quadrangle, or hollow square, was a leading 
feature at all the missions. The church, being 

life: at the missions S3 

the principal structure, very properly contfuned 
the greater part of the wealth and fine ornaments, 
and occupied the choicest site in the quadrangle. 

These mission churches, each provided with 
tower and chime of bells, were large, strongly 


built and in every case picturesque and impres- 
sive. It required from ten to fifteen years to 
complete one of these churches. " Each will re- 
main, so long as arch, pillar or dome of it shall 
stand, a noble and touching monument of the 
patient Indian workers who built, and of the 
devoted friars who designed, its majestic and grace- 
ful proportions." Occupying the chief place at 
the side or corner of the mission quadrangle, 



within easy view of the surrounding stretches of 
country, the church opened directly into the 
inner courtyard, made beautifully attractive by 
fountains and shrubbery. 

Use of Adobe. — In the construction of the mis- 
sion buildings a most important part was played 


by the adobe. This is a gun-dried brick, made 
of common 8m*face clayey soil with which cut 
straw is mixed to cause even drying. It is usually 
about four by twelve by sixteen inches in size. 
From the most distant ages the Pueblo Indians 
of Arizona made houses of thick mud " to keep 
out the heat in summer and retain it in winter;" 
and the Spaniards were not slow in seizing the 
idea of the Indians, suiting it to their more refined 

The thick walls of these adobe structures were 
never left rough, but were plastered inside and out 
with mortar made of the same mud, then finished 
with lime wash in some soft color, such as cream, 
yellow or pink, thus presenting an attractive ap- 

Introduction of Tfles. — Tiles also came to be of 
much importance in mission architecture. At first 
the buildings had usually been thatched with 
straw or reeds, especially the ivih; but great losses 
had been sustained through fire. The tile was 
first used at Mission San Luis Obispo, and later 
was used at all missions. Tiles for the roof were 
of a yellowish red color, fashioned by the padres 
in exact copy of the tile in common use in Europe. 

Mission San Luis Rey. — De Mofras, a noted 
French explorer who visited the missions while 
they were in a prosperous condition, has left a 


faithful description <^ Sao Lois Rey, one of the 
largest, which may be taken as a type of all. Its 
great structure was a quadrilateral of two stories, 
450 feet square, the church occupying one wing. 


This church' was 164 feet long, 50 wide and 60 
high, with walls 4 feet thick. A tower at one 
side supported a belfry for a chime of eight bells. 
On the opposite side stretched the long corridor 
with its two hundred and fifty-six arches. Its 
ornaments of gold and silver were superb. 


The interior was formed by a court ornamented 
with fountains and decorated with trees. Upon 
the surrounding gallery were the dormitories of the 
monks, of the mayordomos, the guest chambers, 
the workshops, schoolrooms and storehouses. The 
Indian girls — or nuns, as they were called — 
dwelt in the monasteries, where, under the care 
of Indian matrons, they learned to make clothes 
of wool, of cotton and of flax. In the schools the 
children mingled freely with those of the white 

The Indians were encouraged to settle in villages 
in the near-by valleys and to take on the begin- 
nings of civiUzed Ufe. It was understood that the 
" produce of their labor and the soil itself belonged 
to the Indians." But the missionaries were man- 
agers and directors, and so there was almost no 
Umit to their power over the missions and the 
property connected with them. 

Life of the Neophjrtes. — For the neophytes, or 
baptized Indians, life was an almost ceaseless 
round of reUgious, social and industrial duties. 
Mr. John T. Doyle gives this picture of life in a 
mission : 

" At sunrise the bell sounded for the Angelus and the Indi- 
ans assembled in the chapel, where they attended morning 
prayers and Mass and received a short reUgious instruction. 
Then came breakfast, after which, distributed in squads as 


occasion required, they repaired to their work. At 11 a.m. 
they ate dinner^ and after that rested until 2 p.m. Work was 
then resumed, and continued until an hour before sunset, when 
the bell again tolled for the Angelus. After prayers and the 
rosary the Indians supped, and then were free to take part in 
a dance or some such innocent amusement." 

Thus in the missions seven hours of each day 
were given to labor, two to prayer and what time 
remained was given to rest or recreation and wor- 
ship. Neglect of the many religious services was 
one of the commonest offenses of the neophytes, 
and was usually punished with flogging. 

The Indian children were given systematic in- 
struction in religion and in music. In singing and 
in playing certain instruments, especially the violin, 
flute and violoncello, some of the boys and girls 
became very skillful. 

Daily Duties. — The workaday life varied some- 
what with the locality, but every mission was 
like every other in being a " hive of industry." 
The natives cared for the neighboring ranches and 
the gardens and orchards were worked by them. 
The creek was to be dammed in, ditches for irri- 
gation to be digged, stone to be quarried, brick 
to be made, lumber to be hewn, the common 
industrial arts to be mastered and everything to 
be kept in repair. 

The neophytes went to field, garden or vineyard 
in squads, which were under the management of 


the more trusty and capable natives, called al- 
caldea, or foremen, who in turn were directly respon- 
sible to the padres. As compensation for their labor 
the Indians received food, clothing and instruction. 
Their dress consisted of a linen shirt, a pair of 
pantaloons, a smock frock or coarse blanket and 
usually shoes. Women received every year two 
changes of underclothing and a new gown. The 
alcaldes and head workmen had in addition clothes 
similar to those worn by the Spaniards. At best 
the clothing of the natives was coarse and meager. 
When we recall the way in which the Cahfornia 
Indians had lived for many generations, it is not 
surprising that many were glad of an opportunity 
to escape the round of mission duties, cast off their 
unaccustomed garments and seek again the wild 
freedom of mountain and of forest. 

Food. — The food supply of the mission natur- 
ally proved a strong attraction to the indolent 
savage. The principal items in the bill of fare were 
roasted barley (atole) and corn meal (pinole) ; fresh 
beef or mutton often, but not always in abundance ; 
and a few vegetables commonly served with coarse 
meal cakes called tortillas. The quality of the food 
was sometimes complained of, no doubt with good 
reason; and on the whole it is doubtful whether 
the Indians were physically improved under the 
rule of the missions. Nevertheless a generation 


later old surviving mission Indians, who had passed 
through the sorrows of secularization and suffered 
its discomforts, were 
much given to singing 
the praises of earlier 
days, as with deep pa- 
thos they would lament 
the passing of buen 
Hempo (the " good 
time ".) 

Hisstoa Goveniment a 
Kindly Despotism. — The 
California mission was a 
kindly little despotism. 
While there was time 
for play and time for 
rest, we are told how *"* ' 

the whole place seemed 

alive with industry: " trades plying indoors and 
outdoors; tillers, herders, vintagers by hundreds, 
going to and fro; children in schools; women spin- 
ning; bands of young men practicing on musical 
instruments; ... at evening, all sorts of games 
of running, leaping, dancing and ball throwing, and 
the picturesque ceremonies of a religion which has 
always been wise in availing itself of beautiful 
agencies in color, form and harmony." 

A beautiful touch of real life is given in the form 


of greeting sometimes used between padre and 
neophyte. When the gentle missionary chanced 
to meet one .of the Indians he saluted him with, 
"Amad a Dios, hijo!" and the neophyte reverently 
returned the salute, "Amad d Dios, Padre!" 
(" Love God, my son;" " Love God, Father.") 

The Indians were like grown-up children in 
everything except the capacity for doing mischief; 
and in this they were full-grown men. The mis- 
sionary was their tutor, standing in the place of a 
parent. Association with white soldiers and colo- 
nists usually led to vices, particularly the vice of 
gambling, which was carried to great excess, and 


drunkenness, which was everywhere followed by 
dreadful results. 

The absolute rulers of the missions were the 
Gray Friars themselves. Like many of the tyran- 
nies of ancient Greece, the sway of the mission- 
aries was often both wise and kind, but always 
most complete. The padres were directly respon- 
sible to the President, who, in turn, reported to 
the head of the Franciscan college at San Fer- 
nando; and all was under the temporal power of 
Spain — a fact that came at length as a rude shock 
to the friars, resting in a security they had fondly 
believed to be complete and lasting. 



Downfall of the Missions not Anticipated. — ^' If the 
little grief-stricken band of monks who stood weep- 
ing around Junipero Serra's grave in 1784 could 
have foreseen the events of the next thirty years, 
their weeping would have turned into exultant 
joy." These words are full of good cheer and 
full of truth, but the sympathetic writer might 
have painted another picture, none the less true 
yet full of gloom and despair. For if the happy 
friars, who in the midst of abounding prosperity 
were congratulating themselves that the spiritual 
conquest of Alta California was at last completed, 
after the founding of Santa Inez Mission in 1804, 
could have foreseen the sad events of the succeed- 
ing thirty years, their exultant joy would have 
turned into heaviness and weeping. 

Original Terms of Occupation. — When the work 
of occupying Lower California was committed to 
the Jesuits in 1697 two important conditions were 
laid down: '* (1) That possession of the country 
was to be taken in the name of the Spanish crown; 
and (2) that the royal treasury was not to be 



called on for any of the expenses of the enter- 
prise." Fathers Kino and Salvatierra had already 
received donations to help the work. Other per- 
sons were induced to make gifts, and very soon a 
permanent endowment fund was estabhshed for 
the foundii^ of Catholic missions in California. 

BAN laauKL lossioN 

The Pious Fund of the Califomias. — From the in- 
come of this fund were defrayed the regular ex- 
penses of the missions. A sum equivalent to 
$10,000, yielding at the rate of five per cent a yearly 
interest of $500, was enough for the support of 
one mission. In a little time this growing endow- 
ment came to be known as " The Pious Fund of 
the Cahfomias." 

Until the year in which they were expelled from 



California the Jesuits managed the Pious Fund. 

When the missions of Lower California were 

confided to the 
Dominicans and 
those of Upper Cali- 
fornia to the Fran- 
ciscans, the large 
and growing income 
from the fund was 
divided between the 
two orders. 


Spain's Original Purpose. — It was part of the 
original purpose of the Spanish government that 


when the Indian neophytes were sufficiently in- 
structed and civilized, the missions should be 
changed into parish churches, and thus cease to be 
missions. It was the intention of the government 
to carry this plan into effect as soon as it was 
found safe to do so. 

In the meantime the missions were superintended 
by Father Serra and the Father-Presidents that 
followed him, while the friars naturally enough 
came to feel that they were secure in their posi- 
tions and surroundings for an indefinite time. At 
any rate, if the change was not wholly unexpected 
by them, it nevertheless found them unprepared 
and caused a great shock when it actually did 

The government of Spain set the too brief space 
of ten years as the period at the end of which the 
Indian rancherias, or villages, which had grown up 
about the missions, were to be formed into pueb- 
los, or corporate towns. At each mission a parish 
was to be set up under a parish priest, the churches 
were to be used for these newly formed parishes, 
and other buildings were to be changed into curate's 
house, courthouse, schools and public offices. 

The act which decreed that the missions should 
be turned over to civil control was passed by the 
Spanish Cortes in 1813. Although the act remained 
a dead letter for many years, the friars had good 


reason to be alarmed. It seemed to them " the 
tocsin of their doom, of the downfall of their 
establishments, and the ruin of their work." Many 
a devoted missionary left California never to return. 

In the meantime there had sprung up in Mexico 
a series of struggles for independence from the 
mother country, rendering Mexico both unable and 
indisposed to assist the friars of California, who, 
in most instances, remained loyal to Spain. Much 
of the system and harmony that had been secured 
at the cost of long and patient toil in the actual 
workings of mission, presidio and pueblo now gave 
way to disorder and the spirit of anarchy. 

The Final Edict. — In 1834 the final blow, so long 
dreaded but up to that time averted, fell in the 
form of a positive edict from. Mexico that the 
missionaries should hand over to stewards, or ad- 
ministrators, all records and inventories of mission 

Sad to say, the decree was carried out in a way 
that looked like downright plunder, and meant the 
complete ruin of the once prosperous missions and 
the confusion and scattering of the simple-minded 
Indians. The great powers that the missionaries 
had been wont to enjoy were now given to officers 
of the government called administr adores, one at 
each mission. These officers were supposed to con- 
duct the business affairs of the missions for the 


benefit of the neophytes, so that the padres might 
devote their entire time torehgious work; but they 
were not slow to turn the income from mission 
lands into the greedy grasp of the government. 

Pitiable Condition of the Neoph]rtes. — What could 
be more pitiable than those thousands of ignorant 
and helpless neophytes, so completely dependent 
upon the missionaries, all at once torn from their 
teachers and protectors and thrust out upon the 
scant mercy of unscrupulous whites who were eager 
for the very choicest of their land and treasure? 

The leading argument in favor of the change 
was that the Indians were really in a state of 
servitude and must be set free; while another 
reason that was given much weight was the urgent 
need of the money which, it was thought, would be 
secured. On the other hand, the missionary claimed 
that such a race of men as the native savages of 
California could be brought to a state of order and 
discipline only by the use of force. Of what value 
would they ever be if they were allowed to do as 
they pleased? How could they ever be made of 
use to themselves as men unless they were first 
made useful to their masters? Thus reasoned the 
Spanish padres. 

It is not surprising, therefore, that when the 
decree went forth the missionaries were not ready 
for it. The neophytes, they truthfully urged, 


were not yet prepared for independent, civilized 
life. Perhaps the missionaries never would, within 
any reasonable time, have been quite ready for 
such a change. Civil control sometime was in one 
sense right, and was in the plan from the beginning; 


yet it is to be deplored that the original intention 
was not carried out with more justice and wisdom. 
Decline of tlie Mission System. — The neophytes 
remaining at the missions naturally sympathized 
with the padres. As conditions went steadily 
from bad to worse, the lot of the helpless Indians 
was indeed most wretched. The so-called eman- 
cipation was often little more than a bold-faced 
sham. Out of one hundred and sixty families 
at San Diego to whom emancipation was offered 


by the governor, only ten could be induced to 
accept it. The case of San Diego is typical of 
many. The Indian was suddenly reduced to a 
state of orphanage; The words of James Steele 
are full of pathos: " Cast again upon the world 
which had once been his home, all his new wants 
aggravating the misery of a savage Ufe, unable 
longer to avail himself of the life of either savage 
or citizen, he died, and continues to die, until, 
of all the swarthy hosts that watched from their 
hills the coining of the cross-bearers, scarce enough 
are left to furnish ethnology a clew.'' 

To illustrate the dreadful falling away of the 
mission system it is only necessary to show a com- 
parison of the twenty-one missions in certain 
leading points under the religious administra- 
tion in 1834 and under the civil control in 1842: 

1834 1842 

Indians 30,650 4,450 

Neat cattle 423,000 28,220 

Horses, mules and asses 61,600 3,800 

Sheep, swine and goats 321,500 31,600 

Acres cultivated 172,970 9,884 

Influence of the Missions of Lasting Value. — It 
is with feeUngs of sadness that one must record 
the unhappy end of what has been called one of 
the grandest experiments ever made for the eleva- 
tion of an unfortunate race. If the disciples of 
St. Francis in California were not men of deep 


learning or Bcientific observation, at least they 
acted, in the main, in good faith, and deserve 
praise for their courage, their toil and their heroic 
sacrifices. And if they failed in reaUzing their 


noble ambitions for the Indians, they wrought 
better than they knew in the great work of holding 
CaUfornia for a higher race and a higher destiny. 

" Ring, gentle Angelus! ring in my dream, 
But wake me not, for I would rather seem 
To live the life they lived who've slumbered long 
Beneath their fallen altars, than to waken 
And find their sanctuaries thus forsaken r 
God grant their memory may survive in song! " 

— C. W. Stoddaed. 



The Threefold Plan of Occupation. — When the 
Spanish governnient undertook to occupy Alta 
California a threefold plan was devised, which 
included the religious foundation, the civic com- 
munity and the military garrison. We have seen 
how important and really indispensable was the 
part played by the mission system; we must not 
fail to consider the other agencies, known as the 
pueblo and the presidio. 

Origin of the Pueblo. — The origin of the pueblo 
is found in a very eariy period of old Spanish 
history. In the most general sense it is a town 
of any description and of any size. Thus the 
mission itself, with its cluster of Indian villages, 
or rancheriaSy formed the basis of a pueblo; even 
the presidio, soon to be described, might in this 
sense be called a pueblo, since it gradually became 
a general center of popu ation. 

In its more special sense, however, a pueblo is 
"a corporate town, with certain rights of juris- 
diction and administration." In this sense the 
pueblo was a local political unit inasmuch as it 



applied to all the voters in a certain definite ter- 
ritory; it also had rights over wide tracts of land 
beyond the actual limits that had been conferred 
by the pueblo grant. 

Purposes of the Pueblo. — The settlement of Cali- 
fornia by the Spanish people, called gente de razdn 
(gentlemen of reason,) was encouraged by the crown 
of Spain, the main purpose being to secure to His 
Majesty the complete dominion of the rich land. 
Other ends to be served in the founding of pueblos 
were to supply the new missions with needed grain 
and in a little time to furnish the garrisons with 
recruits and produce. Each settler, known as a 
poblador, was " entitled to receive a house lot, a 
tract of land for cultivation, another for pasture 
and a loan of sufficient stock and implements to 
make a comfortable beginning." 

Founding the Pueblo. — By law a pueblo grant 
consisted of four square leagues of land, laid off 
in the form of a square or oblong tract. The first 
care was to choose the plaza, or public square, 
which must be in the midst of the pueblo, or on the 
water front if the site was favorable. When the 
plaza had been located the town was carefully 
Jaid out into blocks and lots, it being well un- 
derstood that public buildings, council house, the 
church and leading private establishments should 
face the plaza from the different sides, while in 


its very center should be the courthouse (juzgado) 
of the pueblo. 

The next step was to divide the remaining land 
into building lots and grant these to the settlers, 
each poblador receiving a lot usually of about one 
thousand square feet. 

According to the theory each pueblo should in- 
clude, besides the building lots, small farms of 
fertile soil, a long strip of land called the commons, 
and still other lands, some distance from the town, 
for common pasture and woodlands. 

Every pueblo of over a thousand persons was 
to be governed by a council {ayuntiamento) com- 
posed of judges, attorneys and other councilmen, 
who had many duties to perform in looking after 
the public welfare. 

The Ideal and the Real Pueblo. — If one reads 
the details of the plans for settling California with 
these " gentlemen of reason,'' bearing in mind the 
noble objects set forth for the establishment of 
the pueblos; if one considers the painstaking and 
minute provisions made for public buildings and 
private homes, and studies the long code of in- 
structions and regulations laid down for the guid- 
ance of every officer and of all the settlers, one will 
be led to say, "Here we may expect to find the ideal 
city and a perfect city government." But nothing 
could be farther from the truth. The actual Cali- 


fomia pueblo was very difEerent from the beautiful 
ideal on parchment. The difference is largely ex- 
plained by the Spanish love of what Americans 


call "red tape" and by the inferior character of 
the first settlers. 

San JosS. — In 1774 orders were first given for 
the founding of the two pueblos of San Jos6 and 
Los Angeles. The beautiful Santa Clara Valley had 
attracted attention five years before, when the mis- 
sionaries were vainly searching for Monterey Bay; 
it then abounded with great herds of elk, deer 
and antelope, while in the surrounding hills nu- 
merous grizzly bears found luxurious homes. In 


January, 1777, San Jos6 was founded by fourteen 
families, and was thus the first real pueblo in Alta 
California. The exact name was El Pueblo de San 
Jos6 de Guadalupe. 

Los Angeles. — The site of Los Angeles had been 
visited by Captain Portold shortly after the found- 
ing of San Diego Mission, on the second of August, 
1769. Possession was taken in the name of Spain, 
and the place was called Nuestra Senora la Reina 
de los Angeles (Our Lady the Queen of the Angels). 
It was not until September, 1781, that the pueblo 
was formally established, by twelve families, forty- 
six persons in all. 

These were the only towns that Spain actually 
founded in California, although an attempt was 
made at Branciforte, the present site of Santa 
Cruz; and these were so indifferently founded and 
for a long time so poorly cared for, that the experi- 
ment of civic colonization seemed almost a com- 
plete failure. 

Character of the First Settlers. — Most of the first 
settlers were shiftless and indolent; many were 
condemned criminals; all were unfit for successful 
colonization. It is no wonder that the growth of 
San Jos6 was very slow — after a period of twenty- 
eight years it numbered only one hundred and 
ninety-four persons all told. And as for Los 
Angeles, it is said that not one of the forty-four 



original colonists could read or write^ and that 
thirty-five years elapsed before the first school was 

Spain made the mistake of trying to make her 
colonies of use and profit to the home government 
instead of seeking the highest development of the 
colonies themselves. 

Plan for Establishing Presidios. — In order that the 
Spanish pobladores might be made secure against 
Indian attacks and that Spain might hold Califor- 
nia against invasion by foreign forces, there was 
planned a line of garrisoned towns, or fortresses, 
at strategic points along the frontiers. These were 
to be the presidios. 

The province of CaUfornia was divided into mili- 
tary districts; and in each district there was to be 
a presidio whose affairs were directed by an officer 
known as the comandante. According to the theory 
the military power was supreme throughout the 
province; but in reality the influence of the mission 
fathers made them easily the superior force. 

Four Presidios Founded. — In Alta CaUfornia four 
presidios, or presidial towns, were founded. These 
were Monterey, San Francisco, San Diego and 
Santa Barbara. Monterey's central location, genial 
climate and other natural advantages made it 
for a long time the most important of all Here 
was fixed the residence of the provincial governor; 


while the near-by mission of San Carlos was the 
headquarters of the Father-President. Thus Mon- 
terey was of commanding importance, remaining 
the capital city of Alta California until our Ameri- 
can state government was begun, in 1849. 

Monterey. — The presidio of Monterey was first 
built in 1770. Captain Vancouver describes it as 
he saw it about twenty 
years later: "The build- 
ings form a parallelo- 
gram, or a long square, 
comprising an area of 
about three hundred 
yards long by two hun- 
dred and fifty wide, 
making a complete in- 

closure." Around this "uttlb cannon," BBooam- bt 
were church and public governor poRxoLi in m». 


buildings, while just be- hon, lob anoelbb 
fore the entrance seven 

cannon looked out upon the magnificent bay. At 
first the small population was purely military, there 
being, all told, several officers and about eighty 
soldiers; but as time went on it gradually changed 
to a civil community, and the forlorn appearance 
of the first years was gradually lost. Richard 
Henry Dana describes the town, about 1840, as 
" decidedly the pleasantest and most civilized 


looking place in California. In the center of it is 
an open square, surrounded by four lines of one- 
story plastered buildings, with half a dozen cannon 
in the center, some mounted and others not. This 
is the 'presidio,' or fort." The small dwelling 
houses are further described as being " built of the 
clay made into large brick (adobe) y about a foot 
and a half square and three or four inches thick 
and hardened in the sun." 

San Francisca. — The San Francisco presidio was 
founded in 1776 with much pomp and ceremony. 
This was an event of much importance to California. 
Those first rude structures — chapel, storehouse, 
officers' quarters and dwellings — were the begin- 
nings of the metropolis of the Pacific. There was 
nothing unusual in the construction of the pre- 
sidio; the little civic town of Yerba Buena was of 
humble origin; the neighboring Mission Dolores 
carried on its work in the face of heavy difficulties. 
But presently mission and pueblo were merged 
into a civic organization or town (1838) and San 
Francisco was made ready soon to enter upon a 
history at once vital, romantic, unique and far- 
reaching in its world influence. 
' San Diego. — The situation of San Diego is one 
of the very finest in California. Possessing a natural 
harbor second only to that of San Francisco and 
a climate deemed by the Spaniard to be far supe- 


rior, its proximity to Mexico might naturally be 
expected to raise it to a place of the first impor- 
tance. But in truth the presidio of San Diego, 
founded at the early date of 1769 — the natal year 
of the occupation of Alta California — never as- 
sumed any great importance, either military or 
civil. That the site was wisely selected, however, 
is clearly shown by its great strategic importance, 
by the record of the mission founded there by 
Junipero Serra and by the beautiful and flourishing 
city of the present day. 

Santa Barbara. — The last of the four California 
presidios was Santa Barbara, established in 1782. 
The buildings erected here, as well as those of 
the neighboring mission, were superior to those 
of every other locality. The surroundings de- 
lighted Captain Vancouver, for he found ''the 
appearance of a far more civilized place than any 
other of the Spanish establishments had exhibited. 
The presidio excels all others in neatness, cleanli- 
ness and other smaller though essential comforts." 

The Presidios Poorly Maintained. — During almost 
the entire Spanish period the fortresses were poorly 
equipped and sadly out of repair, if not really in 
a state of dilapidation. For a little time during 
the administration of Governor Borica all works of 
engineering in California were greatly strengthened 
by Alberto de Cordoba, who was given the rank 


of Engineer Extraordinary. Yet at no time were 
arms and equipment sufficient to resist serious 
attacks by ships of war, although they generally 
proved sufficient to frighten away any hostile 

Around the presidios grew up the four towns of 
Monterey, San Francisco, San Diego and Santa 
Barbara. The transition was at first very slow, 
but with the oncoming of American civiUzation 
the change into thriving, modern cities was rapid — 
almost sudden — and is to-day virtually complete. 


Coming of the Rossiaiis. — By the opemng of the 
eighteenth century Russia had subdued all of North 
Asia, and " Siberia became 
the great game preserve of 
the empire." 

It was quite natural that 
some of the bold hunters and 
trappers should cross over to 
the Aleutian Islands, which 
stretch in a great semicircle 
out from Alaska, and thence 
reach the mainland of North 
America. This was enough 
for a beginning of Russian 
America, which was finally 
(in 1867) purchased by the a ^ch tradkb 

United States, thus adding 

to our domain the vast territory of Alaska with 
its 590,000 square miles. 

As a result of the discoveries of Vitus Bering, the 
Danish explorer after whom the Bering Strait was 
named, a large and profitable trade in furs with the 


Indians was built up. Thus it was the prevalence 
of the otter and other wild game that led to a con- 
quest of Alaska, the " great country," as to many 
another great conquest in North America. 

Russian-American Fur Company. — In 1798 the 
Russian-American Fur Company was formed, with 
headquarters at Sitka. Not long afterwards Count 
Rezanof visited Sitka and found his countrymen 
there in a sorry plight, chiefly from lack of grain 
and other much-needed provisions. 

Thinking that a profitable trade might be opened 
with the Spaniards of California, Rezanof sailed 
southward in 1806 and attempted to enter the 
mouth of the Columbia. Foiled in his attempt, 
he proceeded south as far as San Francisco, where 
very soon he laid 
definite plans for the 
establishment of an 
agricultural and trad- 
ing station at some 
* suitable point on the 
coast of California. 


Settlement at Bodega 
Bay. — Following the lead of Prince Rezanof a Rus- 
sian expedition entered Bodega Bay, some fifty 
miles north of San Francisco. Two years later the 
territory roundabout was carefully explored, with 
the result that in 1812 representatives of the Rus- 


sian empire, without asking leave of Spain, settled 
upon a location ten miles north of the mouth of 
Russian River, and there formed the settlement of 
Bodega Bay. It is stated that the territory of the 
neighborhood was ceded by the simple-minded 
Indians for a purchase price consisting of *' three 
blankets, three pairs of breeches, three hoes, two 
axes and some trinkets." 

Fort Ross Established. — Fort Ross, thirty miles 
farther to the north and sixty-five miles in direct 
line from San Francisco, was later established; and 
this fort, with blockhouses and a strong stockade, 
became the residence of the Russian governor and 
the chief stronghold of the Russian settlers during 
their stay in California. 

The direct reasons for making these settlements 
were to afford the Russian- American Fur Company 
the agricultural products so much needed and to 
develop stations for procuring and handling the 
skins of seals, otters and beavers. Whether the 
Russian government wished by indirect means to 
gain any large territory in California we cannot be 
sure. Certain it is that the Spanish Californians 
viewed with suspicion and alarm the presence and 
activities of the Russians on their northern border. 

Spain Becomes Jealous of Russia. — With the found- 
ing of Santa Inez Mission in the autumn of 1804 
the spiritual occupation of California from San 


Diego to San Francisco had been completed. It 
was an easy ride from one mission to the next; 
and purely religious reasons did not wholly deter- 
mine the establishment of additional missions. The 
feeling of jealousy toward the Russians, and the 
fear that they might extend their occupation and 
lay claim to much of the territory were prime 
causes for the founding of missions across the 
Golden Gate, at San Rafael (1817) and Sonoma 
(1823). In reality these missions had a more stra- 
tegic and military meaning than a purely religious 
purpose, directed, as they were, first against the 
Russians and later against the movements of 
American immigrants. 

Father Mariano Payeras, president of the mis- 
sions at that time, sounded a note of alarm against 
the Russians in 1817. But this did not prevent 
them from reaching out into new territory and 
increasing their trade. When in 1833 Father Jos6 
Gutierrez arrived in Sonoma, he was deeply ag- 
grieved by what he witnessed. There were " the 
Russians on the one side and the Anglo-Americans 
on the other possessing themselves of the fertile 
lands of the frontier, which ought to be occupied 
by Calif ornians alone." 

General Vallejo's Visit and Report. — Partly because 
Gutierrez was so active in reporting the things 
he saw, the governor ordered General Mariano 


Vallejo, of whom we shall learn more later, to 
proceed to the vicinity of the Russians and gain 
all the information he could which might be of 
value. It is from Vallejo's prompt report to the 
governor that we glean interesting facts regarding 
the strength and life of the Russians in California. 

The cultivation of the land about Fort Ross was 
by no means so important as the fur industry. 
The increase of live stock was more satisfactory 
than the yield from the cultivated fields. Vallejo 
reported 700 horses, 800 cattle, 2000 sheep and 
some 60 swine. Besides two small mills there was 
a primitive shipyard, where a number of vessels 
were successfully built, and a tannery, where 
many varieties of leather and skins were prepared 
for the market. These, with the indispensable 
blacksmith shop, provided occupation for the 
population of the place, numbering, all told, about 
three hundred persons. 

The fort itself proved to be of much interest to 
General Vallejo. 

" It consisted of a square inclosure, one hundred varas each 
way. On the diagonally opposite comers, one looking toward 
the ocean in front and the other toward the mountains in the 
rear, were octagonal blockhouses of hewn logs with embrasures, 
each furnished with six eight-pounder pieces of artillery. A large 
building at the main gate or entrance of the inclosure, where a 
sentinel was always on guard, also had embrasures and six cannon; 
and three others were kept at the house of the comandarUe, . 


There were fifty-nine buildings . . . within the indosure; the 
others scattered without order or r^ularity on the outside. The 
walls of the buildings were of wood, strong enough to resist 
the arrows of the Indians but not sufficient of themselves as a 
defense against artillery." — Htttell. 

The little chapel, symbol of the Greek form of 

Chriatianity and the center of the religious life of 

the settlement, was a 

marked contrast to the 

imposing Franciscan 

Decline of Russian Ac- 
tivity. — Thus the Rus- 
sians wrought and Uved 
at Fort Ross. Of low in- 
tellectual grade, except 
the comandanle, they 
were never very pros- 
perous, and never did 
they actually prove a 
ou,aKBExcHAPK,K.ETBoas serious menace to the 
Spanish or Mexican pos- 
sessions. If nothing else had interfered, the un- 
satisfactory harbor and other geographic conditions 
would perhaps have prevented them from carrying 
out any large or complex plans. As it was, the 
industries of the place fell off and there was in- 
creasing thought of giving up the fort. In 1839 


Captain John A. Sutter, who had just arrived 
in CaUfornia and was laying large plans for a 
colony on the present site of Sacramento City, 
purchased from the Russians the bulk of their 
personal property. In the words of John Bidwell : 
"Sutter bought them out — cattle and horses; a 
little vessel of about twenty-five tons' burden, called 
a launch; and other property, including forty odd 
pieces of old rusty cannon and one or two small 
brass pieces, with a quantity of old French flintlock 
muskets pronounced by Sutter to be of those lost 
by Bonaparte in 1812 in his disastrous retreat 
from Moscow. This ordnance Sutter conveyed up 
the Sacramento River on the launch to his colony." 
— Century, Vol. XLI. 

Russians Bid Farewell to California. — Two years 
later the Russians bade farewell to California and 
sailed away from Bodega, never again to return 
to their former possessions. 

Material evidence of the Russian settlement is 
fast disappearing. Steps are being taken to pre- 
serve and restore the landmarks; otherwise the 
day would speedily come when the Russian occu- 
pation in Alta California would be known only 
through the tomes of history, and the Russian 
civilization within our borders would be but a 
faint and fading memory. 



Califomia as a Province of New Spain. — It was 
about the first of July, 1769, when Caspar de 


Portolfi reached San Diego and became the first 
Spanish governor of Califomia, an integral part of 
the Promndas Internas of New Spain. 

From that time until 1823, when the present 
Mexican republic was established, there were nine 
different governors, the seat of the government 


being at Monterey, which is proud of the distinc- 
tion of having been CaUfornia's first capital. After 
Mexico secured independence from Spain there 
were twelve administrations, most of them of 
very brief duration, the first regularly appointed 
Mexican governor being Don Luis Arguello, and 
the last, Pio Pico, holding power up to the time 
of the American conquest in 1846. 

The Spanish Rule. — Under the Spanish rule, Cali- 
fornia was but a small element in Spain's vast 
colonial system, controlled by the famous Council 
of the Indies. The governor was appointed by 
the central authority of New Spain, or Mexico, 
and under him were officers called prefects and 
sub-prefects. He also had the power of appointing 
other oflScers, and was himself miUtary commander 
of the province. 

The law-making body consisted of only seven 
members, and met but once in four years. There 
were in reality no courts of law in the entire province 
except those of the alcaldes, who were a kind of 
all-round magistrates to settle quarrels and assist 
in preserving peace. Yet the alcalde, with silver- 
headed cane and pompous air, played an important 
r61e in the daily life of Hispano-California. 

Governor Borica. — Of the old Spanish gover- 
nors Diego de Borica (1794-1800) has been called 
"the most genial and chivalrous as well as wise and 


laborious of the old Spanish stock." He was the 
real founder of popular education in California; 
he introduced the cultivation of hemp and flax; 
he administered a justice that was tempered with 
mercy. He was in all things a cultured gentle- 
man, a gallant commander, a wise and energetic 
executive. It would have been extremely diflS- 
cult to find a man who could, with such poor 
materials for building a state, have accomplished 
more of good and of progress than did Borica. 

Picturesque Features of Spanish-American Life. — 
The later Spanish rule in California was marked 
by many features that will always appear pic- 
turesque and romantic to succeeding generations. 
Completely removed, as if by centuries of time, 
from the rush and whirl of our strenuous life, 
California was then the home of simple, romantic 
happiness. Guadalupe Vallejo, a member of one 
of the leading Spanish families, writes with much 
warmth about the Golden Age of the past : 

" It seems to me that there never was a more peaceful and 
happy people on the face of the earth than the Spanish, 
Mexican and Indian population of Alta California before the 
American conquest. We were the pioneers of the Pacific coast, 
building towns and missions while General Washington was 
carrying on the war of the Revolution, and we often talk together 
of the days when a few hundred large ranches and mission tracts 
occupied the whole country from the Pacific to the San Joaquin. 
No class of Americans is more loyal than the Spanish Califor- 


nians, but we shall always be especially proud of the traditions 
and memories of the long pastoral age before 1840." — Century, 
December, 1890. 

Plenty of Land. — What a comfort it must have 
been in those days that there was ample room 
for all! No niggardly, grasping land policy then! 
Neither was it deemed a crime for a hungry stranger 
to kill a bullock, provided he left the hide where it 
might be recovered by the owner; or for a traveler 
to saddle a fresh horse that he had picked out and 
lassoed on the plain, provided he turned him loose 
in time for the next rodeo (round-up). 

Abundance of Wild Game. — The land teemed with 
wild game as perhaps did few places on the earth's 
surface. Geese, ducks, swans and numerous other 
species of the feathered tribe; antelope, deer, elk 
and the many other quadrupeds, both small and 
great, that bring delight to the heart of the hunter; 
panthers, bears — black, cinnamon and grizzly 
— and apparently every manner of carnivorous 
beast; fish, in varieties without number, in brook, 
river, lake and bay — such is a hint of the animals' 
paradise called California, before the gringo came. 
A glimpse is afforded by an incident from real life. 
W. H. Thomes is describing a morning ride on a 
spirited horse in the early forties, in the neigh- 
borhood of San Jos6. After chasing half a dozen 
sneaking coyotes and encountering a black bear 


that finally "waddled oflE'^ with an angry growl, 
the ride is resumed: 

" Then I saw two or three thousand wild geese feeding near 
the pond, or lake, and making much noise with their complaints 
and honks. I thought it would be fun to dash into their midst 
and see them take to flight. But, to my surprise, they did 
not seem to care for me or the horse, being accustomed to see- 
ing the latter in inmiense runs feeding on the plains. When 
I was close upon them they parted to the right and left, and 
waddled out of the way, aided by their wings, and simply 
hissed at me for disturbing them in feeding, and would not 
move except for a rod or two. They could not have acted 
more stupid if they had been hatched in a barnyard in Rhode 
Island, and waiting for their daily supply of com." 

Care-free People. — Romantic as were the ad- 
ventures of the early pioneers of California, fasci- 
nating as is the study of Indian lore, it is yet the 
Hispano-Californians (Spanish-Californians) them- 
selves that chiefly give name and charm to pictur- 
esque California. These people, care-free knights 
of the saddle, enjoyed a life different from that of 
the true Mexicans and totally distinct from that 
of the Americans. This life, though possibly pro- 
saic to many of their own number, seems at this- 
distance of time to have embodied many of the 
fascinating elements of true chivalry. 

Being country folk and lovers of the field, the 
inhabitants spent much time in the saddle; indeed, 
it may be said that " many were almost born in 


the saddle/' for the art of riding was mastered 
at a very early age. We are told that " every 
one could ride perfectly, and could pick up a leaf 
or a flower from the ground as he galloped past. 
Good riding was expected as a matter of course." 

Cattle and horses there were by thousands over 
the foothills and through the valleys. A few of 
these, such as the favorite mount of the ranchero 
(rancher) or of his vaquero (cowboy) were thor- 
oughly domesticated, as were also the faithful 
oxen; but the great bands ranging over hill and 
plain were apparently as untamed as their wild 
ancestors in their native haunts. 

The Rodeo. — One of the chief factors of the 
social Ufe of the times was the frequent gathering 
in connection with the rodeos, when thousands of 
cattle were driven together from miles and miles 
of pastures to be separated and branded. Many 
a delightful time was enjoyed on such occasions. 
There was always plenty to eat. When the com- 
pany had gathered and gayety and good cheer 
were the order of the day, one of the fattest and 
best of the animals was killed and choice portions 
broiled and eaten even before the skinning was 

The Fandango. — Following hard upon the rodeo 
came the fandango, or general dance. This holds 
a very prominent place in any description of the 


early social life. It was of frequent occurrence, 
especially in the winter season, and it may be 
said that it was held everywhere. So constant 
was the dancing that it seemed as though the 
higher class of young people were '' either riding 
on horseback or dancing all the time." 

A wedding was frequently made the occasion 
for a notable fandango. Of course the marriage 
customs of those days admitted of no fine car- 
riages or cars for wedding trips. The usual method 
was for the groom to mount the saddle horse be- 
hind the bride — and away they went on a keen 

Other Amusements. — Besides the rodeo and the 
fandango, the chief amusements of those fine caba- 
lleros (gentlemen) and their vaqueros were horse- 
racing, in which but two horses usually competed 
at a time and which were often made the occasion 
for heavy wagers; bullfighting, which brought the 
greatest excitement to multitudes of onlookers and 
usually ended in the death of the bull ; bull and bear 
fights, in which the hind foot of the bear was often 
tied to the fore foot of the bull, to equalize the 
struggle ; and the lassoing of bears, a sport demand- 
ing a high degree of skill and intrepidity. Truly 
there was no lack of exciting sport. 

The Homes. — The houses were of adobe and 
without other floors than the clean-swept earth. 


After the walls were plastered outside and in 
with the same materials from which the adobe 
bricks were made, the whole was finished with 
lime wash in different colors. The typical roof 


was of yellowish red tiles, similar to those used 
on the mission buildings. 

The Women. — The women of rank were never 
seen with soiled dresses. They were proverbial 
for their spotless linen, of which it was the pride 
of every family to have a goodly store. All classes 
wore the same plain kind of dress to church in the 
morning, for they were instructed never to forget 


" that all ranks of men and women were equal in 
the presence of the Creator;" but for home wear 
and for company they had many expensive dresses, 
some of silk or of velvet, others of lace, often 
of their own making. Of these they were very 

The Open-handed Hospitality. — Men and women 
alike were noted for their hospitality to all, whether 
friends or strangers. Missions were very com- 
monly made to serve as hotels, but they never 
thought of charging for food and lodging. Like- 
wise the traveler was made welcome at any of 
the ranchos, and he made no pretense of paying 
for anything received the.e. Yet for the^est 
to neglect to thank the lady for her kind hospi- 
tality was considered almost brutal. The usual 
formula was, ^^Muchas gracias, senora," if the 
hostess was young or handsome or rich. This 
open-handed hospitahty is well illustrated by the 
practice of leaving an uncounted pile of coins in 
the guest's bedchamber, from which the visitor 
who was in need of ready cash might help him- 
self. This use of guest money was but one of the 
many striking and attractive features of the gener- 
ous age. 

There was a simplicity of contentment among 
the people of Hispano-California that makes it 
easy, and even natural, for the daydreamer or 


superficial observer to wish that things might 
always have remained as they were in those days 
and to regret the coming of change as a dire 
misfortune if not a real calamity. 

The ^^ces of the People. — But one does not have 
to look far below the surface to discover unlovely 


quaUties, yes, and positive vices, among these 
simple-hearted, care-free Californians. Cattle steal- 
ing, vagrancy, gambling and drinking were very 
common. Little ' advancement of culture or of 
commerce, little real progress in the things that 
make for modem civilization, could be looked 
for in our country under the rule of the Hispano- 
CaUfomians, even with all their romance and 


How quickly and how completely was the sim- 
ple life of those early days transformed! But this 
story must be reserved for later telhng. 





Mexico's Neglect of California. — For many years 
before she finally fell into the hands of the United 
States, Alta California was bound to the mother 
country by ties that were very weak. Mexico's 
neglect of what was really her choicest possession 
was the cause of much comment &nd many com- 
plaints. Mr. Forbes, who wrote his history as early 
as 1835, saw how loose were the bonds that held 
the province to the mother country: 

" California, however, is quite a distinct country from Mexico, 
and has nothing in common with it except that the present in- 
habitants are of the same family; it is therefore to be feared 
that on any cause of quarrel between the two countries it will 
be apt to separate itself from the parent state. This, from its 
distant situation and the difficulty of conveying troops from 
Mexico, would be easily effected; and although the present popu- 
lation is inadequate to form permanently an independent nation, 
yet the fashion of splitting countries into small independent por- 
tions has become so prevalent in the late Spanish possessions 
that an attempt to realize such a project may not be so improb- 
able as it should now seem." 



The very next year after these words were written, 
in fact, there occurred a revolution under Alvarado, 
and California was declared independent of Mexico. 
This independence was of short duration, however, 

r RANCHO caico 

for in a little while Alvarado was given the office of 
Mexican governor of California. 

California a Prize. — California was a prize that 
might well have been coveted by the greatest 
nations of earth. Her unlimited resources were 
for the most part unknown and wholly unappre- 
ciated by the Mexican government. Her vast ter- 
ritory stretched away from San Diego on the 
south to Oregon on the north, and from the Pacific 


Ocean away to the heart of the Rocky Mountains^ 
embracing an area of nearly 450,000 square miles 
— enough in itself for a great western empire. 

The enterprises carried on in connection with 
the Franciscan missions, such as the raising of 
cattle and sheep and the growing of grains, should 
have been at least a strong hint of the importance 
to Mexico of developing California's wonderful re- 
sources without delay. Doubtless the government 
felt secure during many years in simply holding 
the land, and imagined that at some convenient 
time in the distant future she would give real 
attention to California, and render such assistance 
as CaliforWa ought to have. In the meantime 
California had little support and no real encour- 
agement from the mother country. She was almost 
entirely ignored. 

Many Nations Interested in California. — But if 
Mexico was unwilling to lift her eyes and behold 
the prize, other nations refused to be so blind. 
France had been impressed with the soft climate 
and fertile soil of the territory held by the Fran- 
ciscan friars; England cast longing glances at the 
magnificent harbors along the coast, while British 
writers referred knowingly to negotiations sup- 
posed to be taking place with Mexico; and Russia 
appeared for some time to be on the eve of an 
advance movement from Fort Ross and Bodega, 


which should at last take in the entire *San Fran- 
cisco Bay system. 

More important still, the United States govern- 
ment had been keeping a jealous watch over the 
concerns of California ever since the wonderful ex- 
plorations of Lewis and Clark. President Andrew 
Jackson wished that he might extend our western 
boundary, and endeavored to bring about the pur- 
chase of a large part of California in connection 
with his negotiations for Texas. 

Commodore Jones Seizes Monterey. — A little later, 
in 1842, the feeling of American officials was shown 
by the action of Commodore Jones, who had been 
cruising along South America. He was led to be- 
lieve that Mexico had declared war on the United 
States. Having been charged, as we are told, to 
" watch closely the French and British vessels, and 
not let them be the first to gain a presumptive right 
to any of the California harbors," he made all haste 
to sail to Monterey, where he caused the American 
flag to be raised over the Custom House and an- 
nounced the conquest of California by the United 
States. This conquest proved premature ; and when 
Jones learned that war had not been declared, he 
humbly pulled down his country's flag and retired 
with such grace as the circumstances would admit. 
Mexico was somewhat alarmed — and she had 
reason to be. 


President Polk Desires California. — It is stated 
that President Polk, shortly after his inauguration 
in 1845, announced that the acquisition of Cali- 
fornia for the United States was one of the four 
great objects and tasks of his administration. 
The subject began to be quite commonly talked 
about at Washington and very generally favored. 
After Texas had been admitted to the Union, 
Daniel Webster in a letter to his son used these 
words: " You know my opinion to have been, and 
it is now, that the port of San Francisco would be 
twenty times as valuable to us as all Texas." 

'' Manifest Destiny " Claims California for the United 
States. — One of the chief causes of all this talk 
about acquiring California was the feeling of sus- 
picion that England had been making secret plans 
and was likely, at any moment, to take the territory 
herself. Webster felt that she would ^' doubtless 
now take care that Mexico shall not cede California, 
nor any part thereof, to us; '' and our minister to 
Mexico, Mr. Thompson, wrote, a little later: " I 
will not say what is our policy in regard to Cali- 
fornia. Perhaps it is that it remain in the hands 
of a weak power like Mexico, and that all the 
maritime powers may have the advantage of its 
ports. But one thing I will say, that it will be 
worth a war of twenty years to prevent England 
from acquiring it." 


With this feeling toward England and a similar 
suspicion toward France, coupled with our own 
great desire for the prize, it is not surprising that 
our government " should consider the time ripe 
for some definite action in regard to this fair 
province." " Manifest destiny," it was said, had 
decreed that California should become a part of 
the United States. Such a course seems to have 
become the policy at Washington soon after the 
accession of President Polk. It remained however 
to determine when and how the result should ac- 
tually be achieved. The United States strongly 
desired CaUfomia and seemed no longer complete 
without her. 




.Early Foreigners in California. — The first immi- 
grant train to enter California from the United 
States reached the land of promise in the fall of 

These were by no means the first foreigners to 
find their way hither, for as early as 1814 John 
Gilroy, an EngUsh cooper, had come, and a few 
years later had received permission to marry and 
settle where the prosperous town of Gilroy now 
stands. Nor were the men of '41 the very first 
to come overland, for in 1827 Jedediah Smith 
reached California with a small trapping party 
from the Rocky Mountains. And before 1841 a 
number of others — English, Scotch and those of 
other nationalities — had come by land or by sea. 
But this party of 1841, of which John Bidwell 
became the most distinguished pioneer, was the 
first regularly planned and successfully executed 
immigrant train from the United States to far- 
oflf California. 

John Bidwell's Plan for Emigration. — In his twen- 
tieth year young Bidwell became possessed of the 



idea of seeing the great Western Reserve, and that 
longing eventually led him to California. 

The seventy-five dollars he had saved from his 
earnings at teaching school for the purpose of 
entering college, he 
spent in getting as far 
west as the Platte Re- 
serve. There he be- 
came acquainted with 
men who, like himself, 
were filled with the 
thought of going on to 
the far West. Public 
meetings were held, and 
these were attended by 
settlers from far and 
near. Finally several 
hundred of them banded 
themselves together for 


the trip, naming them- 
selves the " Western Emigration Society." 

Start of the Bartleson Party. — But troubles came 
and the movement went to pieces. Bidwell re- 
doubled his exertions among more distant neigh- 
bors, and was at length successful in having a party 
of five families, numbering in all sixty-nine persons 
— men, women and children — pledged to make 
the start. " Our teams," he has told us, " were 


of oxen, mules and horses. We had no cows, as 
the later emigrants usually had, and the lack of 
milk was a great privation to the children. It was 
understood that every one should have not less 
than a barrel of flour, with sugar and so forth to 
suit; but I laid in one hundred pounds of flour 
more than the usual quantity, besides other things. 
This I did because we were told that when we got 
into the mountains we probably would get out 
of bread and have to live on meat alone, which I 
thought would kill me, even if it did not others." 

A man named Bartleson, from Jackson County, 
Missouri, was elected captain of the expedition. 
Not one of the party really knew which way to go. 
Of course they all knew that California was some- 
where out West; beyond that they had almost 
nothing to guide them. 

Fortunately they heard of a company of Roman 
Catholic missionaries who were on their way from 
St. Louis to establish a mission among the Flat- 
head Indians of the Rocky Mountains. This 
company had engaged an old mountaineer named 
Fitzpatrick for a guide, and he would overtake 
the Bartleson party if they would wait another 
day. They chafed at the delay, but it proved 
most fortunate for them. 

Union with Father De Smet's Party. — Accompanied 
by the missionary band, headed .by Father De Smet, 


the caravan traveled to Soda Springs, in Idaho. 
It was rare good fortune to be accompanied by 
such a man as De Smet, -whom Bidwell later 
referred to as " genial, of fine presence and one 
of the saintliest men I have ever known." Until 
the party reached the Platte River nothing unusual 
happened. Headed by the intrepid Captain Fitz- 
Patrick and the missionaries, they each day made 
what progress they could. 

The Immigrant Ttain. — It was customary at night 
to draw the wagons together in the form of a hollow 
square, picket the animals inside and detail a guard 
to keep watch. At times the train was half a mile 
in length, but when danger threatened, the wagons 
kept near together, for safety. For most of the 
distance these first pioneers had their own roads 
to make; when obstacles were to be removed or 
gulches filled, all hands worked with a will. 

Fear of the Indians. — From Fitzpatrick a great 
deal was learned about the Indians. As a pre- 
caution the cooking was usually done in the day- 
time, so as to have no fires at night. Of course 
the party was treated to an occasional scare from 
the Indians, as, for example, when one of the men 
named Dawson, who chanced to become separated 
from his companions while hunting, was said to 
have been so scared by forty friendly Cheyennes as 
to report that he had been surrounded by thousands 


of Indians, who had taken from him his mule, 
his gun and most of his clothing. 

Vast Herds of Buffaloes. — The hiiffalo was a 
new source of interest. Almost from the start many 
antelope and elk and much smaller game had been 
seen; but btiffaloes were scarce till after the Platte 

had been reached. In our own day it is impossible 
for young persons to conceive of the vast herds 
of these huge animals that swept over prairie and 
hillside, thundering at times all night long, making 
the very earth tremble with their wild, indescrib- 
able rush. Of these animals — long since practically 
extinct — Bidwell spoke thus: " I think I can truly 
say that I saw in one day more buffaloes than I 
could have seen of cattle in all my Ufe. I have seen 


the plain black with them for several days' journey 
as far as the eye coxild reach." At times some of 
the party were compelled, on the approach of one 
of these vast herds, to advance some distance from 
camp to turn or divide them by firing guns and 


making fires, lest they should -in their mad sweep 
trample underfoot the entire camp. 

By the time the party had reached the Sweet- 
water, the buffaloes had all but disappeared. 
Great numbers of mountain sheep had been seen at 
Scott's Bluffs, below Fort Laramie; but because of 
their exceeding wildness, none had been killed. 

Division of the Party. — When the group of mis- 
sionaries was about to leave lovely Soda Springs, 


one-half of the emigrant party — now numbering 
sixty-four in all — was so discouraged that they 
decided to continue with the missionaries to Fort 
Hall rather than to venture into the unknown 
regions towards California. The Bidwell party 
held to the original purpose, and, taking an affec- 
tionate farewell of De Smet and his followers, en- 
tered, with grave misgivings, the tractless western 
wilds in the direction of the great Salt Lake. 

Story of the Bidwell Division. — Let Bidwell go on 
with the story in his own words: 

"September had come before we reached Salt Lake, which 
we struck at its northern extremity. Part of the time we had 
purposely traveled slowly to enable the men from Fort Hall 
the sooner to overtake us. But unavoidable delays were fre- 
quent; daily, often hourly, the road had to be made passable 
for our wagons by digging down steep banks, filling gulches, 
etc. Indian fires obscured mountains and valleys in a dense, 
smoky atmosphere, so that we could not see any considerable 
distance in order to avoid obstacles. . . . Trees were almost 
a sure sign of water in that region. But the mirage was most 
deceptive, magnif3ring stunted sagebrush on diminutive hillocks 
into trees and groves. Thus misled, we traveled all day without 
water, and at midnight found ourselves in a plain, level as a 
floor, incrusted with salt, and as white as snow. Crusts of 
salt broken up by our wagons, and driven by the chilly night 
wind like ice on the surface of a frozen pond, was to me a most 
striking counterfeit of a winter scene. This plain became softer 
and softer, until our poor, almost famished, animals could not 
pull our wagons. In fact, we were going direct to Salt Lake 
and did not know it. So, in search of water, we turned from a 
southerly to an easterly course, and went about ten miles, and 


soon after daylight arrived at Bear Elver. So near to Salt 
Lake were we that the water in the river was too salt for us or 
our animals to use, but we had to use it; it would not quench 
thirst, but it did save life. The grass looked quite luxuriant, 
and sparkled as if covered with frost. But it was salt; our 
hungry, jaded animals refused to eat it, and we had to lie by a 
whole day to rest them before we could travel." 

But it was not long before grass and water were 
found to the north by following the antelope trails. 
The condition of the animals then made it neces- 
sary to rest nearly a week. The low state of the 
provisions, on the other hand, compelled the party 
to go forward with the least possible delay. More 
than once those hardy emigrants had to travel all 
day and all night without water to drink. 

The Wagons Left Behind. — After many trying 
delays and obstacles that tried the stoutest hearts, 
they came within sight of great mountains to the 
westward. Then it was quickly decided that the 
wagons must soon be left behind or the party would 
be overtaken by the snows before reaching Cali- 
fornia. None of that party could ever forget the 
terrible difficulties of such an undertaking. They 
were all inexperienced in the methods of packing 
horses, mules and oxen. The emigrant train soon 
became a caravan of loose packs, frightened horses, 
kicking mules and bellowing oxen. 

Having oxen instead of horses, young Bidwell 
had a harder time than the others. Not infre- 


quently the oxen with their packs were left from 
six to ten miles behind the party, and would only 
reach camp about midnight. 

The party had been warned against going too 
far south and thus getting into a desert country: 
they could not then go west: there seemed nothing 

Frvm (m M print 


else to do but to turn to the north and cross a 
range of mountains. Would they ever reach Cali- 
fornia traveling northward? The dangerous canons 
leading towards the Columbia River were greatly 

At length they reached the river which, several 
years later, Fremont saw for the first time and 
named the Humboldt. Following the Humboldt 
many days, they came to the great Sink in western 


Captain Bartleson Leaves the Party. — Being com- 
pelled to drive the packed oxen, the emigrants 
made but eighteen or twenty miles a day. Some 
were in favor of leaving the oxen entirely and 
hastening on to California, where, they were as- 
sured, there was plenty of beef. One day, after 
circumstances that were peculiarly trying to Bid- 
well, Captain Bartleson and seven men, after taking 
most of the scanty store of meat, suddenly left the 
remainder of the party and started off, the cap- 
tain calUng out to those left behind to keep up if 
they could. 

Following their trail for two or three days, all 
traces of the course taken by them were finally 
lost in the sand, and the members of BidwelFs 
party were thrown wholly upon their own resources. 
Keeping a general westerly course, they crossed 
the Carson River and followed the Walker River — 
these were not named till some years afterward — 
to the Sierra Nevada Mountains, not then know- 
ing the name given to them. 

While preparations were being made for the 
hard climb just after the better of the two remain- 
ing oxen was killed, who should come up from be- 
hind but the eight men who had gone ahead nine 
days before! Captain Bartleson was indeed a 
sorry sight as he ate the best supper that could be 
provided. In desperation he exclaimed: " Boys, 


if I ever get back to Missouri, I will never leave 
that country. I would at this moment gladly eat 
out of the trough with my dogs ! " 

Difficulties in the Siena Nevada. — Climbing the 
moxmtains with difficulties that can never be 
fully understood by others, the reunited party at 


lei^h came to the summit; and in a little time 
they were fortunate in finding the extreme head- 
waters of the Stanislaus River. This was followed 
for several days. The last ox was killed and 
eaten to keep the emigrants from starving: after 
that the party killed whatever could be found — 
even crows and wildcats. Slowly they came down 
into the San Joaquin Valley; but seeing another 
range of mountains far o£E to the west, some be- 


lieved it must yet be five hundred miles to Cali- 

" The evening of the day we started down into the valley we 
were very tired, and when night came our party was strung 
along for three or four miles, and every man slept right where 
darkness overtook him. He would take off his saddle for a 
pillow and turn his horse or mule loose. . . . The jaded 
horses nearly perished with hunger and fatigue. When we 
overtook the foremost of the party the next morning we found 
that they had come to a pond of water, and one of them had 
killed a fat coyote; when I came up it was all eaten except the 
lights (lungs) and the windpipe, on which I made my breakfast. 
From that camp we saw timber to the north of us, evidently 
bordering a stream running west. It turned out to be the stream 
that we had followed down in the mountains — the Stanislaus 
River. As soon as we came in sight of the bottom land of the 
stream we saw an abundance of antelopes and sandhill cranes. 
We killed two of each the first evening. Wild grapes also 
abounded. The next day we killed thirteen deer and ante- 
lopes, jerked (dried) the meat and got ready to go on!" 

The End of the Journey. — The starving time was 
over. Preparations were made to press on into Cali- 
fornia before the winter snows. The chosen course 
lay to the north of what proved to be Mount Diablo ; 
but by means of a thinly clad Indian, found on horse- 
back, those pioneers of pioneers were shortly brought 
to the ranch of Dr. John Marsh, one of the few 
foreign settlers in central California at that time, 
of whom they had heard before starting for Califor- 
nia. They were indeed glad to learn that their 
journey was at an end. 


It was almost exactly six months since they had 
set out from Sapling Grove. 

Such is a brief accoimt of the first overland train 
that reached California. Of the many that suc- 
ceeded in reaching the journey's end after that, 
who can give the number? 



Sutter's Place in Our Histoiy. — General John A. 
Sutter will always hold a unique place in the early 
history of California. The deeds he performed and 
the influence he had, form one of those few great 
forces without any one of which it is difficult to see 
how the American possession of CaUfornia could 
have been brought about. The story of Sutter 
clusters about Sutter's Fort, where stands to-day 
the capital city of a noble state. 

Many times has this story been told, yet it 
never loses its charm in the retelling. Is it not 
passing strange that this man, who was neither 
Spaniard nor American, should assume a place of 
such vital importance in the days of California's 
infancy? Yet it was his great admiration and 
love for the American people and their free govern- 
ment that gave him such a conspicuous part in 
the drama which added this brilUant new star to 
the American galaxy of states. 

Who was this man whose name was for years 
on the tongue of every American journeying to- 
ward California? What was Sutter's Fort, the 



objective point for those scores of emigrant trains, 
slowly but steadfastly winding their way toward 


the setting sun? And what gave it such vast 
importance and far-reaching reputation? 

His Early Life. — John Augustus Sutter was born 
in the Grand Duchy of Baden, Germany, in 1803, 
the son of a Lutheran clergyman who, after re- 


moving to Switzerland, secured for his family the 
rights of Swiss citizenship. John received a good 
education, both civil and miUtary, and gained 
much experience in the service *of the French 
army. In 1834 he sailed for New York with the 
purpose of establishing a Swiss colony in America. 
His restless disposition prevented his settling down 
quietly in any of the numerous places he visited 
until he reached California in the summer of 1839, 
fresh from the Sandwich Islands. 

He Becomes Guardian of the Sacramento Frontier. — 
The Spaniards had made no settlements on the 
Sacramento, and it was reported that the Indians 
of the region were very hostile and much given to 
stealing horses and cattle; so Governor Alvarado 
was more than willing to grant Sutter permission to 
settle there, establish his colony, and erect a suit- 
able fort. 

As we have seen, this new guardian of the Sacra- 
mento frontier purchased from the Russians near 
Fort Ross a little vessel and considerable other 
property, including some rusty cannon and old 
flintlock muskets. This cargo of ordnance inspired 
in the minds of the California Indians a wholesome 
fear and respect for Sutter, who had before felt 
insecure for lack of protection. 

Building of Sutter's Fort. — And thus was builded 
the famous Sutter's Fort, in the midst of New Hel- 


vetia, as the captain preferred to call hk grand 
estate. Standing in the eastern part of the pres- 
ent city of Sacramento, some two miles from the 
Sacramento River and a shorter distance from the 
American River, it enjoyed the advantages of a 
site possessing great strategic value. 
It is not strange that the Mexicans should con- 

sider it the key to California. Little did Sutter 
think that he was then laying foundations which 
were to prove one of the most important means in 
the creation of the magnificent empire of the Pacific 
States of America. 

Fremont's Description of the Fort. — The beginnings 
of the Fort, erected in the fall of 1839, consisted of 
an adobe house with roof of tules, and two other 
smaller buildings, which were shortly afterwards de- 


stroyed by fire. The Fort itself, when completed, 
presented a formidable appearance, not only to 
the Indians who had been troublesome, but to the 
Hispano-Californians themselves. Captain Fre- 
mont thus described it as he saw it in 1844: 

" The fort is a quadrangular adobe structure, mounting twelve 
pieces of artillery (two of them brass,) and capable of admitting 
a garrison of 1000 men; this at present consists of forty Indians, 
in uniform — one of whom is always found on duty at the gate. 
. . . The whites in the employ of Captain Sutter, American, 
French and German, number thirty men. The inner wall is 
formed into buildings comprising the common quarters, with 
blacksmith and other workshops, the dwelling house with a 
large distillery house, and other buildings occupjdng more the 
center of the area." 

This most important and impressive landmark 
had with the passing of the years become weather- 
beaten and all but destroyed, when fortunately the 
order of Native Sons of the Golden West under- 
took a complete restoration of the fort; and so 
well has the work been done that doubtless for 
centuries the new Sutter's Fort will stand as a 
perpetual monument to the achievements of its 

The motives that led to the erection of Sutter's 
Fort are to be found in the need of security against 
the Indians and — not less important — in the en- 
terprising spirit and relish for romantic adventure 
of the captain; for Sutter had come with the idea 


of founding a Swiss colony, after some EuropeaD 
model, in North America. 

Sutter Becomes Lord of the Land. — In June, 1841, 
Sutter visited the governor at Monterey, was de- 
clared a citizen of the Mexican republic, and received 
a grant of the land where he had located, to the 


extent of eleven leagues. He was also commissioned 
as an officer of the government. 

Thus armed with citizenship and an officer's com- 
mission, and fortified with cannon and faithful 
Kanakas (natives of Hawaii), with scores of Indi- 
ans ready to do his bidding, the commander of 
New Helvetia might well boast himself lord of all 
he surveyed. His great estate was made still 
greater by the addition by purchase and personal 
services of the sobrante or wide surplus of land 


within the bounds of the Alvarado survey. He 
had come into possession of thousands of sheep, 
cattle and horses, which with the natural increase 
of a few years gave Sutter the basis of well-nigh 
unlimited wealth. 

The Height of His Prosperity. — The enterprises 
and activities set in motion by this " lord of the 
land " are worthy to be compared with those of 
the great Franciscan missions of the preceding gen- 
eration. The opening of the eventful year of 1848 
saw him in the height of prosperity. 

''He had then completed his establishment at the fort; had 
performed all the conditions of his grants of land; had, 
at an expense of at least $25,000, cut a race (water-run) of 
three miles in length and nearly completed a flouring mill . . . 
near the present town of Brighton; had expended toward the 
erection of a sawmill near the town of Coloma about $10,000; 
had over a thousand acres of land in wheat, which promised a 
yield of over 40,000 bushels . . .; was then the owner of about 
8000 head of cattle, over 2000 head of horses and mules, over 
1000 head of hogs, and over 2000 head of sheep; and was in the 
undisturbed, undisputed and quiet possession of the extensive 
lands granted him by the Mexican government. From the center 
of his broad domain could be seen, as far as the eye could reach 
on every hand, a prospect to gladden the heart of the husband- 
man." — Shuck, Representative Men of the Pacific, 

His Fort the Destination of Immigrants. — In the 
meantime emigrant trains began to find their way 
to California from the States, touching in almost 
every case at Sutter's Fort as the first settlement 
after the fatiguing trip across the Sierras. In 


greater and greater numbers came these hardy 
settlers, year by year. But Sutter never for a 
moment permitted his Mexican citizenship and 
official commission to restrict his unbounded hos- 
pitality and his most timely assistance to those in 
need. His noble efforts put forth to rescue the 
Donner party, winter-bound and starving in the 
high Sierras, illustrate the fact that he could not 
turn a deaf ear to the cry of human suffering. It 
is no wonder that Captain Sutter's name became 
the talisman in every " prairie schooner " and 
that Sutter's Fort became more and more the goal 
of the westward traveling bands of pioneers. 

He Transfers His Citizenship. — Nor is it any won- 
der that Mexican officers grew suspicious of the 
guardian of their north frontier as tokens of his 
friendship toward all things American multiplied, 
or that they became fearful lest Sutter's warm 
welcome to the gringos might result seriously to 
California as a Mexican province. Their fears were 
well founded. At sunrise on July 11, 1846, Sutter, 
acting no longer as a Mexican citizen but now as 
a loyal American, hoisted the American flag above 
the fort amidst the roar of cannon. The American 
conquest was completed; the change of flags had 
really taken place — a change that meant a wholly 
new character for California and a new history for 
Sutter's Fort. 


The Gold Discovery Works Hardship to Sutter. — 
But one event that directed the eyes of the world 
toward the new land of promise proved the undoing 
of the genial and generous commander of the Fort. 
It was the discovery of gold. This epoch-making 
discovery was made possible by the enterprising 
spirit of Captain Sutter: it enriched America, but 
it impoverished Sutter. Operations ceased at the 
mills; fields of ripened wheat stood unharvested; 
half-finished leather spoiled in the vats of the 
tannery; thousands of cattle were slaughtered or 
driven away by thieves. " The same thing/' he 
sadly tells us, " was in every branch of business 
which I carried on at the time. I had not an idea 
that people could be so mean." 

But if the gold discovery impoverished Sutter, 
behold how it enriched America! It furnished a 
chapter of history the like of which has never been 
written. It laid the foundation for a great com- 
monwealth — the Empire State of the Pacific. It 
poured into the lap of the nation a volume of 
wealth that could save our credit in the darkest 
days of the Civil War. Well may the Americans 
— as did the Mexicans before us — call New Hel- 
vetia, transformed as if by miracle into the teem- 
ing city of Sacramento, the key of California. 

A New Era for Sacramento. — Through her vic- 
tory in the fight for the seat of the state govern- 


ment; Sacramento, queen of the rich valley where 
once roamed the vast herds belonging to the 
hospitable Sutter, yet remains in an important 
sense the key of California, as she views the dawn- 
ing of a new and greater golden era of enterprise 
and efficiency. 




Start of the Donner Party. — On an April morn- 
ing of the eventful year 1846 another little band 
of emigrants, thirty-one in all, set out hopefully 
from Springfield, Illinois, for far-oflf California. 
The party, made up mostly of three families, had 
been originated by Jiames F. Reed, but it received 
.its name from two brothers, George and Jacob 
Donner, who had decided to join Reed. 

To the train of ten or twelve wagons were united 
other emigrants along the route, until on reaching 
the valley of the Platte it formed a caravan of 
about forty wagons. Filled with eager expecta- 
tion and free from thought of peril, the younger 
members found themselves for many days enjoy- 
ing a novel pleasure trip as deUghtful as it was 
novel. The sky was bright, the spring air balmy, 
and big game abounded everywhere. By early 
July Fort Laramie was reached, and there Inde- 
pendence Day was celebrated in true patriotic 

The Party Divided. — But the parting of the ways 
was soon reached. Should the eager emigrants con- 



tinue on the old Fort Hall road, or should they 
take the ''Hasting's Cut-oflE'' along the southern 
shore of the Great Salt Lake? The majority wisely 
proceeded on the old road, and in due time reached 
California in safety. Had not the other members 
of the party, eighty-seven persons in all, decided, 
on evil counsel, to save time and three hundred 
miles of distance by the short cut, the " Ill-fated 
Donner party " would never have been a fact in 
our history, for the great " disaster " would never 
have befallen. 

The Hasting's Cut-oflf was in reality not a road 
at all; indeed there was not so much as a trail. 
The coiu^e along Weber's canon was so frightfully 
rough as to be almost absolutely impassable; and 
when at last the shore of the Great Lake was 
reached, it was found that an entire month had 
been consumed instead of a single week, and that 
the jaded cattle were quite unfit to cross the wide- 
stretching desert beyond. This, we are told, " was 
a dreary, desolate, alkali waste; not a living thing 
could be seen; it seemed as though the hand of 
death had been laid upon the country." Any at- 
tempt to describe the perils and privations of the 
desert would fail to convey an adequate impression 
to one who has never actually experienced them. 

Provisions Run Low. — In spite of the severe econ- 
omy practiced by the party, an inventory of the 


provisions on hand showed unmistakably that the 
supply was insufficient to last through to CaUf ornia. 
Recognizing the peril of the situation, C. T. Stanton 
and WilUam McClutchen bravely volunteered to go 

for help. They hastened on in advance to Sutter's 
Fort for additional supplies for the belated travelers. 

A most deplorable quarrel between James Reed 
and John Snyder ended in the killing of Snyder 
and the consequent banishment of Reed from the 
company. Thereafter Reed pursued his soUtary 
way in advance; but he was careful very frequently 
to leave some sign or communication for his dis- 
tressed family in the party following on behind. 

Days and weeks dragged wearily by; progress 


was painfully slow; the party once so buoyant and 
hopeful seemed now bereft of all spkit and almost 
of life itself. The snowy summit of the Sierras 
looked gloomy and forbidding and gave a stern 
warning of approaching winter. 

Fresh hope lightened every heart on the nine- 
teenth day of October; for while winding along 
the crystal waters of the Truckee River the down- 
cast party was met by brave Stanton leading 
seven mules packed with provisions. McClutchen 
had not been able to return on account of illness; 
but Stanton brought the welcome news that Reed 
was aUve and far on toward Sutter's Fort. 

Approach of Winter. — Alas! hope suddenly gave 
place to new fear, and fear turned speedily to 
consternation and despair; for the winter which 
they dreaded made its unwelcome appearance a 
month earlier than usual. The wagons could not 
be dragged through the snow — that was most 
certain — and they were therefore reluctantly left 
behind. Provisions were packed on the oxen, and 
the party passed on in a state of desperation. 
Only three more miles to the summit — but mean- 
while came the snow! Silent and beautiful it fell at 
first, but remorseless as the touch of time. Early 
morning saw the chill mantle of death everywhere 
spread over hill and valley. Every avenue of 
escape was now closed; the long and cruel winter 


must be braved amidst the inhospitable snows of 
the high Sierras, or men, women and children 
must be wrapped there in their snowy winding 

At Donner Lake. — " The misery endured dur- 
ing those four months at Donner Lake in our 
little dark cabins under the snow,'' wrote one of 
the survivors, " would fill pages and make the 
coldest hearts ache." 

Let imagination picture as best it can the hor- 
rors endured, the misery experienced, for we must 
gently draw the veil over the harrowing scenes 
of that camp of the dying and of living death. 
The wild beasts howled; the storm king raged; 
then the moaning pines sympathetically lulled to 
grateful sleep. Short allowances of food were 
followed by actual starvation. 

Relief Comes. — Help was coming — though, alas! 
for many it came too late. Captain Sutter, gener- 
ous in truth to a fault, on learning that families 
of immigrants were perishing on the shores of the 
mountain lake, set to work in earnest to send 
immediate relief. The first relief party, headed 
by Captain R. P. Tucker, reached the famishing 
camp on February 19, 1847; and on the twenty- 
second a party of twenty-three persons started for 
Sutter's Fort. 

Soon the second relief party came, headed by 


Reed, and battled bravely to release another band 
of snow-bound victims from " Starved Camp." 
In all, four relief parties pressed onward to Donner 
Lake in the noble work of rescuing the unfortu- 
But many were never rescued except by the 


release of death. Of the thirty-one emigrants 
who left Springfield, Illinois, that spring morning, 
only eighteen lived to reach California. Of the 
eighty-three persons who were snowed in at 
Donner Lake, forty-two perished. Most of the 
survivors were taken to Sutter's Fort, the common 
meeting place for all incoming Americans, and there 


the kindly captain did all in his power to lessen 
their sufferings and to make them comfortable. 
Some of these immigrants have Uved to ripe old age, 
useful citizens of California, contributing worthily 
to the development of the Commonwealth. 



Fremont's First and Second Expeditions. — John 
Charles Fremont, a young oflScer of the United 
States Engineers, and the son-in-law of United 
States Senator Thomas H. 
Benton, is the central 
figure in the actual con- 
quest of California. 

In 1842 he led his first 
expedition to the Rocky 
Mountains for the pur- 
pose of examining the re- 
gion of South Pass and 
finding the best road for 
overland travel to the 

Pacific coast. Kit Carson ^^ r^ .c _c_ 

acted as guide. Return- ^^' -^^^^^^^^ 
ing by way of the Platte '°™ ''■ "^"o^t 

River, the party reached St. Louis in October; and 
a fortnight later he was in Washington, preparing 
his report for the government. 

During 1843 and 1844 Fremont led a second 


expedition,' this time to Oregon and California. Of 
this he afterward wrote: '' During a protracted 
absence of fourteen months in the course of which 
we had necessarily been exposed to great varieties 
of weather and climate, no one case of serious 
sickness had ever occurred among us." 

His Third Expedition. — In May, 1845, he was 
placed at the head of a new government expedi- 
tion for the Pacific coast, with the title of Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel. It was near the end of that year 
when he entered California with a company of 
about sixty men — surveyors, guides and assist- 
ants — and some two hundred horses. His object, 
it was said, was " to explore the most direct routes 
to the Pacific coast, and to do topographical work 
in California." 

War with Mexico had not been begun at the 
time Fremont left Washington, but it was looked 
forward to as almost a certainty in the near future. 
He tells us in the ** Memoirs " of his life that: " As 
affairs resolved themselves, California stood out 
as the chief subject in the impending war; and 
with Mr. Bancroft and other governing men at 
Washington it became a firm resolve to hold it 
for the United States. To them it seemed reason- 
ably sure that California would eventually fall to 
England or to the United States, and that the 
eventuality was near. This was talked over fully 


during the time of preparation for the third ex- 
pedition, and the contingencies anticipated and 
weighed. For me no distinct course or definite 
instructions could be laid down, but the proba- 
biUties were made known to me as weU as what 
to do when they became facts. The distance was 
too great for timely communication; but failing 
this I was given discretion to act.'' 

Fremont in California. — Colonel Fremont left his 
men in camp in the Sacramento Valley and pro- 
ceeded at once to Monterey in January, 1846. 
With Thomas O. Larkin he called upon Jose 
Castro, the commandant-general, explained his 
errand and readily secured permission to conduct 
explorations toward the Colorado River. He was 
careful to point out that his men were "citizens and 
not soldiers." 

Instead of pursuing a southeasterly course through 
the open country of the San Joaquin* Valley, Fre- 
mont with his sixty armed men went west and 
southwest through what were then the most thickly 
settled valleys of California. This angered Castro, 
who declared that such a course was illegal. On 
the fifth of March, Fremont received orders to 
leave the Department of California forthwith, with 
the threat that failure to comply would be followed 
by the use of force. After expressing his astonish- 
ment he tartly replied to Castro that he refused 


to comply with " an order insulting to my govern- 
ment and myself." 

Fremont Fortifies Gavilan Peak. — The situation 
suddenly took on a warlike aspect. Fremont took 
possession of Gavilan Peak, and there built a strong, 
rough fort of logs. " While this was being built," 
he informs us, "a tall sapling was prepared, and 
on it, when all was ready, the American flag was 
raised amidst the cheers of the men." He remained 
on the Peak for several days, while Castro seemed 
to be adding to his forces below and preparing for 
an attack. 

Fremont Retreats Northward. — But Fremont with- 
drew before any attack was made. He retreated 
through the San Joaquin Valley, and left Sutter's 
Fort about March 24 for Oregon. No attempt at 
pursuit was made by the Mexicans. 

When he reached the Klamath country in 
southern Oregon, Colonel Fremont found that his 
progress was somewhat impeded by hostile Indians. 
While thus delayed something happened that 
made him decide to turn back and retrace his 
steps into California. What was it that really 
caused him to make this decision? That it was 
not the Indians nor the snow we may be quite 
sure. In order to understand his movements at 
this time it is necessary to know something of the 
" Gillespie Mission." 


The " Gillespie Mission " to Fremont. — Lieutenant 
Archibald Gillespie had come to California by 
way of Mexico, arriving at Monterey on April 17, 
while Fremont was making his way slowly through 
northern California. He was exceedingly anxious 
to see Fremont, for he was the bearer of secret 
dispatches from Washington. Not finding him at 
Monterey, he hastened to Sutter's Fort, and 
from there took the trail with five men for Oregon. 
Learning by courier that Gillespie sought to over- 
take him, Fremont took a few men and went south 
to meet the lieutenant. Not far from the boundary 
line the men met and the message was delivered; 
Fremont at once decided to retrace his steps into 
the heart of California. 

What was the meaning of these dispatches borne 
by Gillespie? Concerning this question there has 
been much dispute. But the truth seems to be that 
Gillespie was commissioned to instruct Fremont to 
hold himself in readiness at some point convenient 
to San Francisco to cooperate with the land and naval 
forces in case of war with Mexico. In other words, 
Gillespie was to cooperate with Fremont and Larkin 
in bringing about the peaceful annexation of Cali- 
fornia, or if war actually came, the American officers 
were to act together in seizing California by force. 

Fremont's Sudden Return. — Fremont's unexpected 
return excited widespread curiosity. Settlers and 


adventurers flocked to his camp, ready to follow 
where he might lead. On the other hand, General 
Castro was not in a pleasant frame of mind toward 
these foreigners, as the Americans were called. He 
was threatening to drive them all out of CaUfornia, 
and also, some think, to compel a large train of 
immigrants, expected within a very short time, to 
turn back across the wide and dreary plains. While 
such conditions existed trouble was surely not far to 

Fremont Seizes American Horses. — Let John Bid- 
well tell the story of what happened next: 

''It so happened that Castro had sent Lieutenant Arce to 
the north side of the Bay of San Francisco to collect scattered 
Government horses. Arce had secured about one hundred and 
fifty and was taking them to the south side of the bay, via 
Sutter's Fort, and to the San Joaquin Valley. . . . Fremont, 
hearing that the horses were passing, sent a party . . . and 
captured them. This of course was done before he had orders 
or any positive news that war had been declared. . . . Thus, 
without giving the least notice even to Sutter, the great friend 
of Americans, or to Americans in general, scattered and exposed 
as they were all over California, he precipitated the war." 
— Century, Vol. XLL 

Capture of Sonoma. — The next step speedily fol- 
lowed. On June 14, at the break of day, a party 
of some thirty-two Americans, with Ezekiel Merritt 
as a sort of leader, surrounded the house of General 
M. G. Vallejo, the leading resident of Sonoma and 


one of the most distinguished men of California. 
Vallejo was not looking for an enemy and of course 
was taken wholly by surprise; he, his brother Sal- 
vador, his brother-in-law Jacob Leese, and Victor 
Prudon soon found themselves prisoners of war. 

"To whom are we to surrender?" asked the 
wife of General Vallejo, in utter amazement. 
And when it was learned that no one of the party 
claimed to have any definite orders from Fremont, 
there was a scene of great confusion. Some 
wished to back down and leave the place; others 
held that if they failed to stick to their purpose 
they would be little better than robbers and horse 
thieves. The whole project seemed likely to be 
abandoned when William B. Ide made an earnest 
appeal to his comrades to stick to the task they 
had begun with honorable motives. That speech 
turned the tide and made Ide the real leader of 
the Bear Flag Revolution. Sonoma was cap- 
tured and the distinguished prisoner was con- 
ducted to Fremont's headquarters, then to Sutter's 
Fort, where he was given the best accommodations 
the place afforded; but he was constantly guarded. 

Ide remained at Sonoma with twenty-four men 
to make secure the conquest. But what allegiance 
should these men own? What flag should they 
raise? Neither Ide nor Fremont then knew that 
there was war between the United States and 


Mexico; moreover Ide seemed to feel uncertain as 
to what were Fremont's real wishes on the whole 
question of the revolution. 

The Bear Flag is Raised. — Nevertheless Ide was 
ready; he suggested a declaration of independence 
and a republic of California. A flag was needed. 

So the famous Bear Flag was made. 
Benjamin Dewell, one of the latest 
survivors of the party, tells us: 
" The flag was made in the front 
room of the barracks, just at the 
THE BEAR FLAG OF ^^ft of the door, aud most of the 
CALIFORNIA scwlug was douc by myself. ' Bill ' 
Todd painted the bear and star with black ink. 
The colors — red, white and blue — were used be- 
cause they were the colors of the United States Flag. 
The bear was selected as representing the strongest 
animal found in that section of the country. The 
language of the flag was, ' A bear stands his ground 
always, and as long as the stars shine we stand for 
the cause.' " 

The native Californians, watching the move- 
ments of the Americans with idle curiosity and 
taking note of the proclamations that Ide was 
nailing to the flagpole almost daily, were more 
puzzled than angered. Some of them, looking up 
to the oddest of all flags they had ever seen 
floating at the top of the staff, and evidently not 


impressed by the artistic finish, were heard to 
call out/' CocAe/" (pig). 

Organization of the California Republic. — A simple 
organization was agreed to, and the men of the 
Bear Flag party were divided into three small com- 
panies, with Henry L. Ford, Granville P. Swift and 
Samuel J. Hensley as captains. Ide declared that 
it was his object "to establish and perpetuate a just, 
Uberal, and honorable government, which should 
secure to all civil and religious liberty; insure secu- 
rity of life and property; detect and punish crime 
and injustice; encourage virtue, industry and Utera- 
ture ; foster agriculture and manufactures, and guar- 
antee freedom to commerce." 

Short Life of the Republic. — Whether the Bear 
Flag Revolution was wise or unwise and what 
purposes were really accompUshed are questions 
that need not concern us here. For before it 
could in fact be pronounced either a success or a 
failure Commodore Sloat arrived in California, 
the American flag was raised at Monterey, and the 
independent movement ended when, on the tenth 
day of July, 1846, the Stars and Stripes were sub- 
stituted for the Bear Flag. Thus ended the brief 
chapter of the California Republic. 



National Importance of the Conquest of California. — 
The taking of the province of California by the 
forces of the United States proved to be the greatest 
act in the drama of our war with Mexico. Viewed 
as an expression of American policy it carried the 
deepest meaning to our nation as a whole. Presi- 
dent Polk had earnestly endeavored to bargain for 
California by peaceful means through John SlidelFs 
mission to Mexico; but this plan to gain peaceful 
possession of the valuable province ended in failure. 

Question of Slavery as Affecting California. — The 
question of extending slavery had come to over- 
shadow every other public question that concerned 
the American people. There is now no doubt that 
many of those who were in favor of the acquisi- 
tion of California not only hoped but also definitely 
expected that here would be a great stretch of terri- 
tory into which slavery could easily be introduced. 

For many years a kind of balance between free 
states and slave states had been kept up by ad- 
mitting into the Union a state in which slavery 
was forbidden only when another was ready to 



be admitted with slavery. In this manner the 
equaUty of numbers of United States senators from 
the North and from the South had been maintained, 
since each state — whatever its size — is entitled to 
equal representation in the national Senate. 

In view of these facts, what was to be done 
about slavery in California if this state were added 
to the Union? Could slavery be rightfully intro- 
duced here, especially after it had been definitely 
aboUshed by law throughout the territory of Mexico 
in 1829? Or even if that should prove no real 
obstacle, would slave labor be suited to the soil, 
climate and occupations of this western province? 
These questions, and others of the same trouble- 
some kind, were of very deep interest and concern 
to the leading men in the poUtical Uf e of the 

American Settlers Hasten the Conquest. — The 
American conquest of California was made doubly 
certain by the increasing numbers of Americans 
who came to settle, bringing with them their 
customs, their habits, their language and their 
ideas of law and government. The Mexican in- 
habitants of California were, if we make allowance 
for exceptions, viewed with contempt by settlers 
from "the States:'' indeed they were often held 
to be of little more real consequence than the 
Indians. As more and more of the Americans 


came in and showed such sentiments, there was 
naturally a good deal of angry talking about these 
gringos, and threats were rather freely made to 
drive them out of the coimtry. 

But before the conquest really took place, there 
was a change of temper on the part of the more 
intelUgent class of native-bom CaUfomians. These 
natives of Cahfornia were undoubtedly superior in 
intelligence and refinement to the great mass of 
Mexican population. They themselves began to 
talk of Mexico as a foreign country; and as they 
mingled more and more with the better class of 
Americans, the two peoples began to understand 
each other better, and in many instances very 
friendly relations sprang up between them. More- 
over some of them — and General Vallejo first of 
all — perceived that the American element and the 
American civilization must in the end almost cer- 
tainly win the day in Cahfornia. 

In the meantime every year, from 1841 onward, 
saw the coming of new American settlers, and 
every year there were rumors about setting up an 
independent government here; while on the other 
hand the native Californians talked much about 
driving the grasping Americans out of the coun- 
try. In the meantime, too, events were hastening 
to a crisis between the United States and Mexico. 
The Mexican War was about to be begun. 


War with Mexico Declared. — On May 13, 1846, 
after several battles had already been fought, Con- 
gress declared that war existed by act of Mexico. 
The time was ripe for the seizure of California by 
the regular forces of the United States. 

American Flag Raised at Monterey. — Commodore 
John D. Sloat, commanding officer of the Pacific 

Squadron at the time, while at Mazatldn received 
information of actual warfare, from the city of 
Mexico, through Dr. William M. Wood, a sur- 
geon of the United States Navy. Doctor Wood 
informed the commodore " of the battles of Palo 
Alto and Resaca de la Palma, and of General 
Taylor's operations on the Rio Grande." This 
information led Sloat to proceed at once to Mon- 
terey, and accordingly resulted in the hoisting 


of the Stars and Stripes and the occupation of 
California by American forces. 

The frigate Savannah arrived at Monterey, July 
2, 1846, with the brave commander on board. 
Five days later, after the proclamations had been 
written and preparations had been made for similar 
action at other important points, Commodore Sloat 
ordered the act that signalized the conquest. In 
the log of the Savannah for July 7 we find the 
original record of this act : 

"At 10 A.M. an expedition, consisting of the boats of the ships 
Cyane and Levant, with about 85 marines and 140 sailors under 
the command of Captain Mervine, left this ship. At 10.20 
landed all the marines and a detachment of sailors at the 
Custom House wharf, read a Proclamation from the Commander- 
in-Chief to the inhabitants of California, and hoisted the Amer- 
ican ensign on the Custom House flagstaff. During the reading, 
the ship's company were kept at their quarters, and on the 
hoisting of the ensign ashore, this ship fired a salute of 21 guns. 
At 11, the boats returned to their respective ships, leaving the 
marines in garrison in town." 

In the proclamation read to the inhabitants of 
CaUfornia the commodore declared: " The two na- 
tions being actually at war by this transaction, I 
shall hoist the standard of the United States at 
Monterey immediately, and shall carry it through- 
out California/' 

Stars and Stripes at Various Points. — On the 
morning of July 9, acting under instructions from 


his superior, Captain Montgomery of the U. S. S. 
Portsmouth hoisted the American flag at Yerba 
Buena (San Francisco,) with a salute of twenty- 
one guns, followed by three hearty cheers on shore 
and on board. At noon of the same day the na- 
tional ensign was substituted for the Bear Flag at 
Sonoma. Our flag was hoisted in San Jos6 on July 
13, after the departure of General Castro and the 
taking of the pueblo by Captain Thomas Fallon. 

The attitude of the naval officers on the ques- 
tion of holding CaUf ornia was well expressed in one 
of Commodore Sloat's letters to Captain Mont- 
gomery, dated July 12: "All I have to say at 
present is, that we have hoisted the flag and must 
keep it up at every hazard; '' and in Montgomery's 
instructions to Captain Fallon at San Jos6, dated 
the day following: " Of course you will understand 
that it [the United States flag] is not again to be 
hauled down." 

Stockton Completes the Conquest. — Commodore 
Stockton arrived at Monterey on July 15, direct 
from Honolulu, and at Sloat's request succeeded 
to the command of the American forces on land 
and sea. Close upon Stockton's arrival came Cap- 
tain John C. Fremont from northern California 
and the late scenes of the Bear Flag Revolution. 

Commodore Stockton was very active. He de- 
cided at once to extend the conquest to the south. 


and accordiDgly organized the forces of Fremont 
and the volunteers who offered their services into 


the California Battalion of Mounted Riflemen. 
This battalion was the chief instrument in com- 
pleting the conquest which was brought about 
without a single real battle. One of the officers of 



the battalion afterward said: '' We simply marched 
all over California from Sonoma to San Diego and 
raised the American flag without opposition or pro- 
test. We tried to find an enemy, but could not." 

On August 17, Stockton issued a proclamation 
from Los Angeles declaring California entirely free 
from Mexican dominion. 

It is true that the conquest was not entirely 
completed until later in the fall of 1846, and that 
the repulse of General Kearny at San Pascual 
might have been disastrous but for the timely help 
from Fremont. Yet we may say with truth that 
the real conquest of the territory of California by 
the authorized forces of the United States was 
begun by the hoisting of the Stars and Stripes 
over the Custom House of Monterey on the seventh 
day of July by order of Commodore Sloat, and 
was practically completed by the dramatic capture 
of Los Angeles less than six weeks later. 

Thus we have seen that while war was in prog- 
ress between the United States and Mexico, the 
Mexican province of California was conquered 
and became for a brief time a military possession 
of our federal government. What should finally 
become of the prize, whose value was as yet known 
only in part, would depend upon the outcome of 
the war and the terms of the treaty that should 
be made at its close. 





The Most Remarkable Event in California's Eis- 
tory. — Of all the remarkable events in the remark- 
able history of Cah- 
fornia, the discovery of 
gold by James Marshall, 
in 1848, will perhaps 
always hold the chief 
distinction. The event 
itself possessed little 
dramatic interest, but 
it introduced a period 
of history and an ele- 
ment of romance in real 
life that is unique. .^^e Marshall 

Marshall — like Co- 
lumbus before him — was not personally enriched 
by his great discovery: nevertheless the discovery 
itself, like that of Columbus, was world-wide 


in its consequences, transforming in its char- 

Previous Gold Discoveries. — To be sure it had 
been known years before 1848 that gold existed in 
California. Bidwell tells of a discovery of gold 
near Los Angeles in 1841, by Baptiste Ruelle, who 
afterwards claimed also to have found a few " col- 
ors " near the American River in 1843. The same 
authority Ukewise refers to the claim of a Mexican 
in his employ, Pablo Gutierrez by name, insisting 
that he had found gold on Bear River in the early 
spring of 1844. At other times, there can be no 
doubt, gold was actually found in small quantities. 

Such discoveries, however, were like the discovery 
of America by the Northmen, premature — "a 
match struck in the dark." As Columbus' dis- 
covery put an end to doubt and actually opened 
the door to the Western Hemisphere, so that by 
Marshall focused the eyes of the world on Cali- 
fornia and urged on the mighty westward move- 
ment of the American people, even to the gates of 
the farthest Orient. 

Importance of Sutter's Fort. — Sutter's Fort or New 
Helvetia occupied, as we have already observed, a 
very important site. It was situated on the Sacra- 
mento River — practically at the head of navigation 
for larger craft — and a little to the south of the 
tributary El Rio de los Americanos, or the Ameri- 


can River. From the standpoint of government as 
well as in a military sense it was the key to the wide- 
stretching valley which had been scarcely entered 
and was certainly very imperfectly known by the 
Mexicans. Year by year it became more important 
as the chief meeting place for all American immi- 
grants, coming down after their wearisome journey- 
ings from the Sierra Nevada into the heart of 
California. At the Fort the incoming Americans and 
other foreigners were glad of the chance to purchase 
much-needed suppUes of food and clothing. Those 
just from the United States having articles to sell 
found eager purchasers. The penniless found ready 
employment and to everybody was extended Cap- 
tain Sutter's boundless hospitaUty. 

Building the Sawmill at Coloma. — In order better 
to meet the obUgations he felt resting upon him 
to satisfy the wants of the increasing numbers 
of American immigrants, as well as to increase his 
already very large business, he planned to build 
a flour mill, where he might grind his annual crops 
of wheat. To build the mill lumber was neces- 
sary; and it was partly because of this demand for 
lumber that he also decided to erect a sawmill. 

But meanwhile James W. Marshall, a native of 
New Jersey, had come to the Fort and now wished 
to go into the lumber business. Marshall, a wheel- 
wright by occupation, was a quiet, industrious, 


hoDest man, but somewhat queer or eccentric in 
character; moreover, he did not possess very keen 
business judgment. 

In the fall of 1847 Sutter and Marshall formed a 
partnership. Sutter was to furnish the money to 

build the sawmill and Marshall was to select the 
site and run the mill for a certain compensation. 

After several days of diligent searching, Marshall 
and his a^istants reached a spot on the South 
Fork of the American River, called Culloomah by 
the Indians, which seemed to him the right spot. 
This was a small valley- about fifteen hundred 
feet above sea level, forty-five miles northeast of 
Sutter's Fort and so situated that it could be 
reached by wagon. 


Marshall's Story of the Gold Find. — Let Marshall 
tell his own story : 

"You may be sure Mr. Sutter was pleased when I re- 
ported my success. ... In August, everything being ready, we 
freighted two wagons with tools and provisions, and accom- 
panied by six men I left the fort, and after a good deal of diffi- 
culty reached this place one beautiful afternoon and formed 
our camp on yon Uttie rise of ground right above the town. 

'' Our first business was to put up log houses, as we intended 
remaining here all winter. . . . We then cut timber, and fell 
to wotk hewing it for the framework of the mill. The Indians 
gathered about us in great numbers. I employed about forty 
of them to assist us with the dam, which we pUt up in a kind 
of way in about four weeks. In digging the foundation of 
the mill we cut some distance into the soft granite; we opened 
the fore bay and then I left for the fort. . . . 

" I returned in a few days, and found everything favorable, 
all the men being at work in the ditch. When the channel 
was opened it was my custom every evening to raise the gate 
and let the water wash out as much sand and gravel through 
the night as possible; and in the morning, while the men were 
getting breakfast, I would walk down, and, shutting off the 
water, look along the race and see wHat was to be done. . . . 

" One morning in January — it was a clear, cold morning — 
as I was taking my usual walk along the race after shutting off 
the water, my eye was caught with the glimpse of something 
shining in the bottom of the ditch. There was about a foot of 
water running then. I reached my hand down and picked it 
up: it made my heart thump, for I was certain it was gold. 
The piece was about half the size and of the shape of a pea. 
After taking it out I sat down and began to think right hard. 
I thought it was gold, and yet it did not seem to be of the right 
cdlor; all the gold coin I had seen was of a reddish tinge; this 
looked more like brass. I recalled to mind all the metals I 


had ever seen or heard of, but I could find none that resembled 
this. Suddenly the idea flashed across my mind that it might 
be iron pyrites. I trembled to think of it! . . . Putting one 
of the pieces on a hard river stone, I took another and com- 
menced hammering it. It was soft and didn't break: it there- 
fore must be gold, but largely mixed with some other metal, 
very likely silver; for pure gold, I thought, would certainly 
have a brighter color. 

" \5rhen I returned to our cabin for breakfast I showed the 
two pieces to my men. They were all a good deal excited, and 
had they not thought that the gold only existed in small quan- 
tities they would have abandoned everything and left me to 
finish my job alone. However, to satisfy them, I told them 
that as soon as we had the miU finished we would devote a 
week or two to gold hunting and see what we could make out 
of it. 

" While we were working in the race after this discovery we 
always kept a sharp lookout, and in the course of three or four 
days we had picked up about three ounces — our work still 
progressing as lively as ever, for none of us imagined at that 
time that the whole country was sowed with gold. " — Century ^ 
Vol. XLI. 

Exact Date of the Discovery. — The date of Mar- 
shall's discovery has been established beyond much 
doubt by an entry found long afterwards in the 
diary of Henry W. Bigler, one of the laborers at 
the mill, who fortunately had formed the habit 
of keeping a record of things that happened in 
this new land. If more and greater California pio^ 
neers had kept regular journals in early days, these 
would have proved a great boon to us of a later 
day, and many a disputed question would long ago 


have been definitely settled. The entry in Bigler's 
diary is dated Monday, January 24, 1848, and it 
reads, simply: 

'' This day some kind of mettle was found in the tailrace that 
looks like goald, first discovered by James Martial, the Boss of the 

Henry Bigler was the first man to find gold out- 
side the tailrace. It was part of his task to pro- 
vide the camp with fresh venison; and on several 
of his hunting expeditions in the surrounding hills 
his keen eye detected particks of the precious metal 
along the banks of the river. 

The Secret is Out. — Notwithstanding the wish 
of Sutter and Marshall that the discovery be kept 
secret, at least till the mill should be completed, the 
news began to spread immediately. As a conse- 
quence of Marshall's telling some of his men; of 
Bigler's hunting expeditions, which he pretended 
were for securing venison; of Bidwell's report to 
General Vallejo, in the first week of March; of the 
unexpected arrival at the Fort of a number of 
disbanded Mormon soldiers; and of those strange 
influences which always seem at work where an 
important secret is to be kept but which no man 
can fully understand, the momentous fact became 
known and of course spread like wildfire. One 
writer thus expresses the way in which reports were 
exaggerated: ''A grain of gold taken from the mine 


became a pennyweight at Panama, an ounce in New 
York and Boston and a pound nugget at LoDdon." 
Prospectors Arrive on the Scene. — Shortly after 
the original discovery, Marshall had taken a trip 
to the Fort, where he announced the facts to Sut- 

Copyngfti by Undtraood A Undtrvood, JV. F. 


ter and the gold was tested so as to leave no shadow 
of doubt that it was genuine. " I had scarce 
arrived at the mill again," continues his narrative, 
" till several persons appeared with pans, shovels 
and hoes, and those that had not iron picks had 
wooden ones, all anxious to fall to work and dig 
up our mili; but this we would not permit. As 
fast as one party disappeared another woxdd arrive, 


and sometimes I had the greatest kind of trouble 
to get rid of them." 

" Eureka ! " the Key of Western Empire. — So it 
was Marshall's discovery of gold, reports of which 
were spread abroad as on the wings of the morn- 
ing, that transformed CaUfornia into the land of 
El Dorado. Well might pioneer and prophet take 
up the shout from hill and vale, " Eureka! Eu- 
reka! '' for the key had been found that was to un- 
lock the door of a mighty western empire, the 
magic wand had been discovered that was at last 
to break the chains of human slavery. 

The Rush to the Mines. — Soldiers deserted the 
ranks; seamen left their vessels idly rolling in the 
harbors; lawyers abandoned their cUents and de- 
spised their petty fees: all to join in the motley 
crowd of adventurers and rush wildly to the mines. 
Vessels jostled one another in passing through the 
Golden Gate, till the spacious harbor seemed a 
veritable forest of masts. 

"All over California [so runs an early account] the excite- 
ment was prodigious. Spaniard, American and foreigner were 
all alike affected. The husband left his wife; the father, his 
family; people tore themselves from the most pressing duties 
at home; men deserted their masters and these followed their 
servants — all hurried to Sutter's Mill. Some withstood the 
temptation for a short time; but very soon nearly the whole 
male population of the country, unable to resist the evidence 
of their senses when specimens of the newly found gold were 
exhibited before their dilated eyes, became suddenly infected 







with the maddened whirl of the 'yellow fever' — the auri 
sacra fames — and rushed off at a tangent, helternskelter, to 
gather riches, as Aladdin had plucked fruits of priceless value 
in his fahy garden, in the bowels of the earth, among the valleys 
of the Snowy Mountains. " — " Annals of San Francisco, " 

On May 29, 1848, the weekly newspaper called 
the Californian was compelled to suspend publi- 
cation, sending to the few readers that remained a 
mere slip which contained this interesting state- 

" With this slip ceases for the present the publication of the 
Californian — 

'Othello's occupation's gone!' 

The reasons which have led us to this step are many and cogent. 
. . . The majority of our subscribers and many of our adver- 
tising patrons have closed their doors and places of business 
and left town, and we have received one order after another 
conveying the pleasant request that 'the printer will please 
stop my paper ' or ' my advertisement, as I am about leaving 
for the Sacramento.' . . . We really do not believe that for 
the last ten days anything in the shape of a newspaper has 
received five minutes' attention from any one of our citizens. 
. . . The whole country, from San Francisco to Los Angeles 
and from the seashore to the base of the Sierra Nevada, resoimds 
with the sordid cry of 'gold! GOLDIf GOLD!!!' while the field 
is left half planted, the house half built, and everything neg- 
lected but the manufacture of shovels and pickaxes, and the 
means of transportation to the spot where one man obtained 
$128 worth of the real stuff in one day's washing, and the 
average for all concerned is $20 per diem. . . . 

' The best-laid schemes o' mice an' men 
Gang aft a-gley, ' 


as Burns once remarked; and so in this instance, the 'gold 
fever ' stepped in and changed the aspect of things instanter, 
upsetting all our calculations and reducing us to the necessity 
of suspending paper pa3rments." 

Importance of the Discovery. — Henceforth for many 
years the story of California must be read chiefly 
in terms of gold. 

*' Gold! and gold! and gold without end! 
Gold to lay by and gold to spend! 
Gold to give and gold to lend, 

And reversions of gold in futuro, " 

Before the close of 1848 the gold yield of Cali- 
fornia had reached $10,000,000. The next year — 
the famous year of '49 — it was four times as great, 
and in 1853 it reached the enormous amount of 

Who can estimate the wide-reaching importance 
of the effects of the California gold discovery? 
Who among us now can picture to himself the con- 
dition of this land or of our mighty nation if this 
uncounted wealth had never been revealed to 
human eye? 



The Days of Gold. — California, as El Dorado 
(" The Land of Gold")i quickly became the center 
of the world's attention; so in the unfolding pano- 
rama of California's history the natural focus must 
ever be found in 

"The days of old, 
The days of gold, 
The days of '49." 

The days of gold are a fitting culmination of all 
that went before, and in turn they furnish the 
prophecy of what has since been and is yet to be. 
What pioneer does not love to live over again those 
romantic years and revisit in fancy the scenes of 
early days? And what native son or native daugh- 
ter is not stirred by the father's reminiscence of 
times and situations that seem as remote from 
the present as antiquity itself, as wonderful as an 
oriental tale? 

The Coming of the Argonauts. — One of the first 
and most natural results of the gold discovery was 
the rapid increase in the number of miners in Cali- 



fornia. NotwithstaDding early attempts at secrecy 
the miners numbered about two thousand by the 
middle of May, 1848, and two months later there 
were probably more than six thousand. 
This was but a portion of the advance guard of 

CopyriBht bv Vndtrmaod d Undenoood, N. ¥. 


that great army of Argonauts who were setting 
their faces toward the land of the new fleece of 
gold. It is estimated that at the beginning of 
1849 California had, exclusive of Indians, a popu- 
lation of twenty-six thousand, one-half Califor- 
nians and the remainder Americans and foreigners. 

THE DAYS OF '49 201 

By the first of August the number had reached 
fifty thousand. The immigrants of that momen- 
tous year numbered about eighty thousand Ameri- 
cans and twenty thousand foreigners; so that at 
the opening of 1850 the total white population was 
approximately one hundred and fifteen thousand. 
Mining in some of its many branches was the direct 
occupation of about three-fourths of the entire 
working population. 

The foreign immigrants seemed to come from 
every quarter of the globe. Prominent among the 
nationalities represented were Mexicans, British, 
Germans, French and Spanish; while numbers 
came also from Peru, Chile and the Sandwich 
Islands. The Californian population of that time 
was indeed a motley community; is it any wonder 
that questions of law and government were thrust 
upon the young state such as few communities 
are ever called upon to meet? 

California Becomes the American Frontier. ^- It was 
an early decree of " Manifest Destiny " that the 
problems of California were to be American and 
not Spanish problems, and that they were to be 
settled in true American fashion. Even before 
California became a part of the United States 
it was seen that the Spanish language must very 
soon give way to the English. It was quite as 
certain that the experiences and ideas of Ameri- 


can law which the great army of immigrants 
knew most about must speedily take the place 
of the outgrown Mexican system which was sup- 
posed to be in force in CaUfornia. CaUfornia 
took on the aspect of an American frontier very 
rapidly, but under conditions that were unique in 

The Three Routes to California. — How came these 
hosts of hardy Americans hither -these eighty 
thousand men of '49? It may be answered that 
there were three distinct routes from " the States/' 
each filled with hardships and tedious trials if not 
with actual perils. " Around the Horn '' was the 
wearisome course generally preferred by the men 
from New England and the Middle States. Almost 
all the Southerners near the Atlantic coast chose the 
way that led " across the Isthmus; " that is, the voy- 
age to Panama or Nicaragua, then the picturesque 
trip across the tropical isthmus, with excellent 
chances for a long and annoying delay, waiting for 
the vessel that should take them to San Francisco. 
Lastly, there was the overland route, by means of 
the slow-winding emigrant trains— this was uni- 
formly preferred by the hardy pioneers of the Western 
frontier. The old-time emigrant wagon, known as 
the ''prairie schooner," has been thus described: " It 
was scow-built, hooded from end to end, freighted 
with goods and chattels; and therein the whole family 

THE DATS OF '49 203 

lived and moved and had its being during the loog 
voyage to the Pacific coast," 

High Prices. — In those days of gold, prices of 
all kinds of articles and services were fabulously 
high. Here are a few samples. The demand for 
mining implements could not be fully suppUed at 

Copi/riffhi by Ujutery>ood A Undenoood, N, Y. 


any price; picks and shovels ranged from S5 to 
$15 each; a tin pan or a wooden bowl, $5; a butch- 
er's knife, J30. Since miners must eat, the leading 
items on the daily menu of El Dorado Hotel, at 
Hangtown, will be interesting: "Beef with one 
potato, fair size, J1.25; " " baked beans, greased, 
$1;" "hash, low grade, 75 cents;" "hash, 18 
karats, $1;" "roast grizzly, $1;" "jackass rabbit, 
whole, $1.50; " " a square meal, $3." " All pay- 


able in advance. Gold scales on the end of the 
bar." Eggs were sold at from 50 cents to as high 
as $3 apiece; inferior sugar, tea and coffee at $4 a 
pound in small quantities. Medicine may fairly 
have been deemed a luxury when laudanum cost 
$1 a drop and pills brought $10 apiece. Even 
the high price of Uquor — $10 to $40 a quart or a 
bottle, for wine and spirits — Sid not stop the 
drink habit. Quite different was the case of laun- 
dry work: when a San Franciscan's shirt became 
very dirty he threw it away, for washing cost $15 
a dozen, in the days of '49. The '* Annals of San 
Francisco,'' after quoting prices like these, speaks 
of little luxuries that miners would set their hearts 
on in these words: "We dare not trust ourselves 
to name some of the fancy prices thus given, lest 
we should be supposed to be only romancing." 

The rates of rental in San Francisco were " simply 
monstrous," the Parker House, for example, paying 
$120,000 a year in rents, and the El Dorado, which 
was nothing more than a canvas tent, yielding 
$40,000 annually. There seemed to be no limit 
to the rate of interest that would be paid for the 
use of money; from 10 to 15 per cent per month, in 
advance, was often paid. Bayard Taylor has given 
this striking illustration of values: '^ A citizen of 
San Francisco died insolvent [bankrupt] to the 
amount of $41,000 the previous autumn. His ad- 

THE DAYS OF '49 205 

ministrators were delayed in settling his affairs, 
*and his real estate advanced so rapidly in value 
meantime that after his debts were paid his heirs 
had a yearly income of $40,000/' 

Social Customs. — Some of the social customs 
of the days of '49 were as extravagant as the 
prices. Everybody seemed to be making money 
and growing suddenly rich. The excitement every- 
where — the very frenzy that seized men — brought 
into full play the vices of gambUng and drinking. 
San Francisco was the great center of excitement. 
Thither came the thousands of Argonauts, greedy 
for the latest reports from the diggings, frantic 
with a feverish haste to try their luck at some 
rich '^ strike; " thither returned the flush miner, 
with his " pile " of dust and nuggets burning at his 
belt; thither, too, resorted those lowest of human 
beings whose end and aim was to steal from the 
honest workman the wealth he had gained. 

Gambling. — "Gaxabling was a peculiar feature of San Fran- 
cisco at this time. It was the amusement — the grand occu- 
pation of many classes — apparently the life and soul of the 
place. There were hundreds of gambling saloons in the town. 
The barroom of every hotel and public house presented its 
tables to attract the idle, the eager and covetous. ... A band 
of music and numberless blazing lamps gave animation and a 
feeling of joyous rapture to the scene. No wonder the un- 
wary visitor was tempted and fell, before he had time to awake 
from the pleasing delusion. To make a fortune in the turning 
of a card was delightful — the very mingled hope and fear of 


eventual success was a charming excitement. . . . Gambling 
became a regular business; and those who followed it profession-, 
aUy were really among the richest, most talented and influential 
citizens of the town." — '* Annals of San Francisco," 

In the inland cities, like Sacramento and Stock- 
ton, the same scenes were repeated, though usu- 
ally on a somewhat smaller scale. In the society 
of that day restraining influences were almost 
wholly wanting. One pioneer who came to CaU- 
fornia by way of the Isthmus in 1849, could find 
no better way of describing what he saw than to 
call it "Pandemonium on a frolic.'' 

Few Women in California. — Scarcely an American 
woman was anywhere to be found outside the cities 
and towns, and even there they were but few. Prob- 
ably no need was more keenly felt in the days of 
'49 than the need of pure and noble women and the 
homes that they would have maintained. As it was, 
without the refining and restraining influences of 
womanhood and home, life was a scene of constant 
change. Every town and village was " alive with 
a mass of unkempt men, clad in flannel shirts and 
heavy boots, who were inspired with the one desire 
to hurry on to the mines." 

Yet even at the mines not all was greed and 
avarice, nor were touches of sentiment by any 
means lacking. A pioneer tells how one day his 
town " was electrified by the rumor that an in- 

THE DATS OF '49 207 

voice of women's bonnets had arrived and could 
be seen at one of the stores." " I do not overstate 
the truth," he declares, " in saying that the thoughts 
of home that were awakened in the breasts of the 
rude-looking men at the sight of those bonnets 
started tears from eyes that the worst forms of 

privation and hardship had failed to moisten." An 
infant's cry was sweeter than the voice of an angi 
to many a lonely, toiUng father who had left h 
home and family three thousand miles away, stal 
ing his all upon this new venture in Cahfomii 
The few good women who had accompanied the 
husbands and brothers proved a godsend to tl 
towns and mining camps in which they stayed. 


The Pioneer Preachers. — The Christian mission- 
ary, too, found his way to the remotest parts. 
There were always those alert, brave-souled min- 
isters, like " Father " Taylor, Willey and Hunt, 
who remained true in the face of temptations to 
worldUness, whom gold and glittering prospects of 
speedy fortune could not turn aside from their 
steady course, but whose voices were raised to re- 
buke vice and sin, and whose fearlessness won 
them the solid respect and generous support of the 
communities where they labored. 

The Spirit of Equality. — Grasping spirits were 
plentiful, to be sure; but good fellowship, genuine 
hospitality and open-hearted generosity were much 
more plentiful. Never was there a finer practical 
sense of equality among men than that found here 
in the new West, where pedigree was forgotten, 
where earlier profession was abandoned and where 
judge and professor " dug '' shoulder to shoulder 
with menial and bootblack: here every stranger 
was given a cordial reception and none was per- 
mitted to suffer for the necessities of life. 

The Character of the Pioneers. — While among the 
great army of " Forty-niners '' the *' scamps " and 
'^ toughs " appeared to be both numerous and noisy; 
while there drifted into city and camp many a 
hardened criminal and many a drunken loafer; still 
let it be remembered to the honor of our fathers 

THE DAYS OF '49 209 

and to the high credit of our young state, that as 
Theodore Hittell has so well said, " the greater 
part, though rough in dress and not overnice in 
language, were sober and industrious, well fitted to 
preserve pubUc order and admirably calculated to 
found a great state. Thrown upon their own re- 
sources in an untried field, they had to pursue a 
new career. Having no precedents, they had to 
make precedents. . . . Taken in general, there cer- 
tainly never was before, and it may be doubted 
whether there will ever be again, thrown together, 
under such peculiar circumstances, such a body of 
choice and picked spirits." — " History of Cali- 
fornia,'' Vol. III. 



Manly's Early Days. — William Lewis Manly was 
born neaiF St. Albans, Vermont, in 1820. He spent 
his early childhood in the midst of great hard- 
ships, and while yet a mere boy started out in a 
strange world with a cash capital of only seven 
dollars. As a sturdy youth he broke numerous 
paths through the wilds of Ohio, Michigan and 

In 1845 there came glowing accounts of the far- 
off Oregon territory; but during the memorable 
winter of 1848-49 the CaUfornia gold fever seized 
him and, as no other treatment seemed able to 
effect a cure, young Manly quickly decided to 

Manly's story is full of shadow. It is the story 
of terrible hardships and incredible torture; but 
through it the quality of true heroism shines forth 
clear and bright. In those feverish days of gold 
Manly was not alone in passing through trials of 
blackest darkness; but let his experiences be taken 
as a type of the experiences of many whose long 
and useful careers crowned their hves with honor, 



as well as of those others who laid down their lives 
on prairie or desert sands in the vain attempt to 
reach the Golden West. 

Manly Joins an Emigrant Party.— Eariy in '49 he 
set out as a driver for Charles Dallas, a stout- 

hearted pioneer; but not until the season was well 
advanced did his party pass the watershed of 
the Rocky Mountains. The discovery of a small 
sand-filled ferry boat in the Green River suggested 
the question, "Why not proceed in this boat down 
the river, for surely it must at last flow into the 
great Pacific?" As ill fortune would have it, Manly 
and six comrades determined upon this course, won- 


dering why their friends should be so blind as to 
continue on the old Oregon route. 

The Voyage Down the Colorado. — Who that has 
not seen the madly-rushing Colorado can form any 
conception of that dangerous expedition down the 
wild canon? The boat must be abandoned; canoes 
must be constructed from such small pines as might 
be found alongshore. But all to no purpose; they 
knew not what awaited them. 

At length Manly was convinced by the warning 
of a friendly Indian, Chief Walker, added to his 
own disheartening experiences, that it would be 
the part of prudence to change his course before 
death overtook him and to make his way as best 
he could to Salt Lake. The happy upshot of this 
long and wearisome journey was the reunion with 
the party of Mr. Asabel Bennett, who had set out 
in advance from the Missouri River expecting 
Manly to overtake and join him. 

The Meeting with the Jayhawkers. — This emigrant 
train was a very large one, numbering for a time a 
hundred and seven wagons and about five hundred 
horses. They pursued the southern route leading 
to Los Angeles. A map showed a turn-oflf leading 
more directly over the mountains to the Tulare 
Valley. It was an hour of serious consequence when 
Lewis Manly with a majority of his party set out 
upon this unknown and really imaginary route. 


About this time the party known as the " Jayhawk- 
era" passed the Bennett party in their eagerness to 
press on to California. They also encountered ter- 
rible experiences. Indeed it was a wonder, that the 
one woman of the party, Mrs. J. W. Brier, the wife 
of a well-known preacher, ever survived the ordeals 
through which they passed. 

The Horrors of Death Valley. — Grave difficulties 
were encountered by Manly's party in less than a 
week. A careful survey of the country from the 
peaks along the trail convinced him that they were 
certainly pursuing the wrong course. But instead 
of patiently retracing their steps, they decided, 
after much debate, to leave the track and proceed 
directly west, breaking their own road over a wide 
tableland. Their situation grew rapidly worse. 
Viewing the country one day from a lofty summit, 
Manly observed a level plain stretching away to 
the north and west for perhaps a hundred miles, 


which appeared to be entirely without water and 
grass. Beyond there rose a low range of black, 
rocky hills, with the larger range of the Panamint 
Mountains still farther beyond. He looked upon 
one of the strangest of all valleys. It is called 
Death Valley, in memory of the emigrants who 
perished there in 1850. Lying about a hundred 
and ten feet below sea level, the dreary desert 
waste stretches on for fifty miles before the first 
pool is reached. 

The Desperate Condition of the Party. — The chil- 
dren cried for water, when there was not a drop 
to give, and the almost crazed mothers at times 
expected their babes to choke and die in their 
arms. Provisions were exhausted. One after an- 
other of the faithful oxen was killed and the meat 
distributed among the occupants of the seven 
wagons. So desperate was their condition that the 
blood, the hide and even the intestines were all 
used to sustain life. " Every camp was sad beyond 
description," wrote Mr. Manly, " and no one can 
guide the pen to make it tell the tale as it seemed 
to us.'' 

The poor stricken travelers began to ask them- 
selves, " How much longer can we stand this hor- 
rible torture? How can we live when the oxen 
are all gone?" After talking the whole matter 
over very earnestly, it was agreed that two of the 


strongest young men should be asked to go on 
ahead in search of a settlement and food, while the 
party should for ten days await their return at a 
spring they had recently passed. 

Manly and Rogers Go in Sesrch of Aid. — But who 
should undertake the hazardous task? Mr. Ben- 

nett was confident that Lewis Manly would push 
his way through and return if he lived. So Manly 
and a powerful Tennesseean named John Rogers 
were selected for that perilous but noble enter- 
prise, and they set out in solemn silence with the 
prayerful words of Mrs. Bennett ringing in their 
ears: " God bless you and help you to bring food 
to my starving children." 

Those left in the camp were: Asabel Bennett 
and wife, Sarah Bennett, with three children 


(George, Melissa and Martha), J. B. Arcane, with 
wife and son Charles, two Erhart brothers and a 
son. Captain Culverwell and three others whose 
names are now unknown. 

It was well that the horrors of that trip of the 
grim young heroes could not be foreseen; and per- 
haps it is also well that they cannot now fully 
be described. Day after day they urged forward 
their faltering steps without water, the Uttle 
moisture of their bodies evaporating in the dry 
atmosphere, while the torture and agony of body 
and mind increased with every passing hour. 
With dry mouth and parched tongue, weak, 
exhausted and djdng of thirst, they were unable 
to sleep. Only the thought of the helpless women 
and children inspired them to a desperation of 
endeavor that was finally crowned with glorious 

Aid in Sight. — Before realizing or even suspect- 
ing it, they had passed halfway across CaUfornia, 
between the Tehachapi and San Bernardino Moun- 
tains. Cheering signs began to appear, first in 
the form of a crow or a hawk, then a beautiful 
California quail. Finally a sparkling little brook 
of pure clear water gladdened their eyes and ears 
with a dancing song which bade them drink and 
drink again. Lewis Manly hobbled to the summit 
of the last spur in the hills, and then a scene of 


marvelous beauty presented itself to his eyes and 
filled his faint heart with indescribable joy — a 
lovely meadow of a thousand acres carpeted with 
the greenest grass and shaded by spreading oaks, 
while over the surrounding hills roamed innumer- 
able cattle. It was to him truly like a glimpse 
into Paradise. 

It is needless to tell how Manly and Rogers now 
urged themselves forward, and to describe their 
fortimate meeting with Mr. French, who gener- 
ously assisted them in purchasing such provisions 
as were most necessary. 

All haste now to the rescue of the forlorn camp! 
The little mule they had purchased proved nimble- 
footed, but the horses were soon found unequal 
to the huge obstructions and so had to be left to 
their fate. 

Temptation to Give Up Relief Expedition. — As the 
frightful difficulties of the return trip loomed be- 
fore them and became more and more grave, the 
awful question presented itself, "Why not give 
up, and save ourselves?'' More than the allotted 
ten days had already been consumed, and most 
likely the survivors had ere this ventured forth 
and been lost or destroyed by the Indians, or had 
left their bones to whiten upon the desert wastes. 
Even if they should still be aUve in camp, the 
chances of reaching and rescuing them seemed 


pitiably small. But to the honor of those brave 
men — Manly and Rogers — be it said that such 
thoughts of saving themselves, even in the darkest 
hours of peril, were sternly put down; the heroes 
of the desert never for a moment forgot the sacred- 
ness of their mission, but remained faithful to the 

Return to the Desolate Camp. — ''Here is Cap- 
tain Culverwell — dead!'' These were the words 
of Rogers as Manly came up near to the camp 
they had left. It surely looked as if their gloomiest 
forebodings were to be realized. What a trying 
hour was that when Manly and Rogers marched 
toward the desolate camp, Uke two mute Indians, 
expecting — they knew not what to expect! 

One hundred yards to the wagons, and still no 
signs of life! But now a shot from Manly 's rifle 
brought out as if by magic the form of a man 
from under one of the wagons. 

" The boys have come! The boys have come!" 
It was Mr. Bennett himself, who was quickly 
joined by his wife and Mr. and Mrs. Arcane. 
Seldom has a reunion been more affecting than 
was this. 

The majority of the party had left camp in small 
groups, deeming it folly to sit idly by and thinking 
John and Lewis would be foolish to return to res- 
cue anybody if they could but make good their 


own safety: instead of ten days they had been 
twenty-six days from camp. 

Farewell to Death Valley. — It was about the first 
of February, 1850, when the small remnant set 
out, leaving the wagons behind and packing the 
few oxen and the little mule. Death Valley was 
left without regrets, but with deep sorrow for lost 

Then came a long, toilsome journey on foot, 
full of hardship and peril, all longing for the jour- 
ney's end. But hope remained, for they now had 
excellent guides. In spite of everything, the httle 
store of provisions gave out and one after another 
the remaining oxen were killed for meat. But 
each day brought the Uttle band nearer to their 

Nineteen days from the time they left the wagons 
they came to the beautiful brook, which gave new 
life to all. That clear, singing brook remained 
the happiest, brightest stream in all the long 
memory of Lewis Manly. 

All danger was passed. On the seventh of 
March the lovely meadow was reached, and not 
many days later the plenteous bounties of San 
Fernando Mission supplied every pressing want. 

It was November 4, 1849, when the party left 
the trail to take the cut-off, and four long months 
had been spent in wandering, all the while strug- 


gling with appalling hardships. An entire year 
they had been on the way from Wisconsin to Cali- 
fornia, and even then they were over six hundred 
miles from the great gold fields they sought. 

For more than half a century William Lewis 
Manly lived to tell the story of Death Valley in 
'49, and when he died in the autumn of 1901, 
California lost one of her true and tried pioneer 
citizens, loved by his neighbors, an honor to the 



California Without Civil Government — Tidings 
of peace with Mexico were received in California, 
August 6, 1848. But long before this many of the 
American settlers had grown quite uneasy because 
they felt that they were practically without any 
civil government at all. 

When California was taken from Mexico in the 
summer of 1846 there were only about ten thousand 
persons, besides Indians, in the entire territory: of 
these not quite two thousand were Americans. But 
immigrants continued to arrive in larger and larger 
numbers from " the States," and the native Cali- 
fornians had good reasons for their fear that 
sweeping changes were about to take place in the 
country. The American inhabitants showed clearly 
that they would not be satisfied with any other 
than an American form of government. They 
set up a clamor which never wholly died away 
until California was safely made a part of the 
great American Union. 

Mexican Neglect of the Province. — Mexico had 
long treated her northern province with almost 



utter neglect ; and when leading American settlers 
found that there was not even a good system of 
Mexican law, it was most natural that they should 
begin to call loudly for the law and institutions 
with which they had been familiar in their Eastern 
homes. But California was then only conquered 
territory held under military rule, while war with 
Mexico was being waged. Under such conditions 
it was hardly to be expected that organized gov- 
ernment could be provided. Nobody could then 
have foretold for a single year the great changes 
about to be witnessed in California. 

Nevertheless the American population was far 
from satisfied, and the proclamations of the gov- 
ernors led them to hope that there would soon be 
a suitable government. In the meantime they 
were asked " to administer the laws according to 
the former usages of the territory " — which under 
the circumstances meant practically nothing at 
all. The greatest grievance was not that the 
Americans objected to the laws and usages of 
Mexico, but to the very want of any and all laws, 
so much needed, for the protection of life and prop- 
erty. The California Star of March 27, 1847, 
said, " Some contend that there are really no laws 
in force here, but the divine law and the law of 
nature; while others are of the opinion that th^e 
are laws in force here if they could only be found." 


Gold Discoveiy Increases the Need of Definite Gov- 
ernment. — If there was a need for civil govern- 
ment before the discovery of gold, how much 
greater was the necessity after that momentous 
event! For the eyes of the whole world now seemed 
to be focused upon California, and men of every 
tongue and every character came flocking to the 
land of gold. Among the hordes of fortune hunters 
were numbers of '* bad whites,'' who came to prey 
upon others and who were bent on evil. Under 
the excitement of the gold fever, multitudes flocked 
to the diggings; but even then there were many 
lovers of law and order who felt a deep interest in 
California's future. 

"No-Government Period." — After the tidings of 
peace with Mexico had come in the summer of 
1848, no one could doubt that California had 
become a permanent part of the United States. 
The prospect opened before the American popu- 
lation was glittering; surely, they thought, the 
military rule will now end, and a good government 
will be provided by Congress. But great was 
their disappointment on learning that nothing had 
been done by Congress. Then California plunged 
into the uncertainties of the ^' No-Government 

The Question of Slavery Extension. — Why this 
repeated failure on the part of Congress? Why did 


not our national legislature, which surely knew the 
need of California and heard the murmurs of her 
law-loving people, provide the needed government? 
Without doubt the chief cause for delay and fail- 
ure was the question of slavery extension, which 
had come to be the chief subject of the day in 

Many great leaders thought they saw in the newly 
acquired California a splendid field for slavery, 
and so were opposed to providing for it a free 
government. After Wisconsin was admitted to the 
Union in 1848, there were fifteen free and fifteen 
slave states. If California were now admitted as 
a free state the balance would be destroyed, for 
there would be no more slave territory ready, 
while many territories might yet be claimed for 
freedom. The contest was a stubborn one and 
was bitterly fought. 

The Settlers' Movement for Civil Government. — 
But while Congress was wrestling with this prob- 
lem and others growing out of the Mexican War, the 
question of slavery in California was settling itself; 
for it was pointed out that neither the soil nor the 
climate nor the products of any great portion of 
California was really adapted to slave labor, so 
that property in slaves would not be secure. It 
is not surprising, therefore, that patience at length 
gave out, and that there sprang up a movement in 


favor of the much-needed civil government, among 
the better classes of California immigrants them- 

The first Provisional Government meeting was 
held in Pueblo de San Jos6, December 11, 1848, 


where it was recommended that a general conven- 
tion should be held to nominate a governor and 
transact other business necessary for the forming 
of a government. Another large meeting was held 
in San Francisco, which in turn was followed by 
still others in various districts of California. The 
people of the San Francisco district went so far as 
to start a temporary government for themselves, to 


be under a body of fifteen members (called the 
Legislative Assembly of San Francisco), three mag- 
istrates, a treasurer and a sheriff. 

General Bennet Riley Appointed. — While the peo- 
ple were thus taking the matter of government 
into their own hands, Colonel Richard B. Mason, 
the miUtary governor for some time, was suc- 
ceeded. General Bennet Riley, who arrived at 
Monterey on April 12, 1848, saw that it would 
be very difficult to rule a province that was neither 
a state nor an organized territory. He was anxious 
to carry out his instructions but felt that he could 
not permit the people to take steps toward a gov- 
ernment. He felt certain that Congress would 
make some provision, so decided to await, as 
patiently as he could, the tidings from Washing- 
ton. Great was his disappointment on learning 
that Congress had adjourned — and this the third 
time — without providing at all for long-suffering 

Riley's Plans for Organization. — Then it was that 
Governor Riley, having decided to wait no longer, 
made a proclamation describing the situation as he 
understood it and appointing a convention for the 
purpose of forming a state constitution or a terri- 
torial government. The convention was to meet 
in Monterey on the first day of the following 


Better Prospects at Last — Many of the leading 
settlers were at first strongly opposed to Riley's 
action in making plans for a convention because 


they had already planned for a similar convention 
for the same purpose and because they did not 
think Riley, an army officer, had any real authority 
in the matter. But fortunately the leaders of the 


people were broad-minded and patriotic; and when 
they saw that the prospects of securing the needed 
government were better by accepting General 
Riley's plans, they fell to preparing for the conven- 
tion, to be held on the date set by him. In a short 
time harmony prevailed: all hearts were cheered 
by the thought that at last California was on the 
highroad toward a real American government. 



Election of Delegates. — The election of delegates 
to the convention called by General Riley brought 
out more interest than had been anticipated. Much 
of this interest had been aroused by General Riley, 
General Persifor Smith and Thomas Butler King, 
who had gone about from place to place holding 
meetings and pointing out the importance of the 
convention about to be held. 

The native Calif ornians of the southland showed 
unexpected cordiality and even the busy miners 
turned aside to seek out suitable candidates. " It 
seemed, however," as Dr. S. H. Willey has said, 
*' like a very odd idea for such a mass of strangers 
as were then in California, speaking diverse lan- 
guages, knowing little of each others' views, a great 
part of them men without families and in the 
country only for a temporary purpose, to go to 
work within a few months of the arrival of most 
of them, without any authority or encouragement 
from Congress, to set up a new state." Everywhere 
there seemed to be a desire to select only competent 
men as delegates. 



The Convention Meets at Monterey. — The con- 
vention was organized in Monterey on Monday, 
September 3, 1849, opening with prayer to Almighty 
God " for his blessing on the body, in their work, 
and on the country." The meeting place was the 


upper story of Colton Hall, a substantial stone 
structure which remains to-day as a most important 
historic landmark. 

Dr. Robert Semple, who was elected president of 
the convention, said in his opening address: 

"We are now, fellow citizens, occupying a position to which 
all eyes are turned. ... It is to be hoped that every feehng 
of harmony wiL be cherished to the utmost in this convention. 
By this course, fellow citizens, I am Batisfied that we can prove 


to the world that California has not been settled by unintelli- 
gent and unlettered men. . . . Let us then go forward and up- 
ward, and let our motto be * Justice, Industry, and Economy.' " 

The Delegates. — It would be hard to find a 
constitutional convention thjat had a more interest- 
ing membership. While those from the United 
States were naturally a majority of the forty-eight 
delegates, there were also present seven Hispano- 
Californians and one native each of Ireland, Scot- 
land, Spain, France and Switzerland. Of the 
Americans, twenty-two had resided in California 
for three years or longer, hence it can never be 
said that California's first constitution was made 
by ignorant gold hunters. There were notable pio- 
neers, like Sutter, Larkin and Gilbert. The first 
Spanish families of CaUfornia were also represented 
by such men as Vallejo, Pico and Carrillo. 

The average age of the delegates was only 
thirty-six years, yet Bayard Taylor has said that, 
" taken as a body, the delegates did honor to 
California and would not suffer by comparison 
with any first state convention ever held in our 
republic. The appearance of the whole body was 
exceedingly dignified and intellectual, and parUa- 
mentary decorum was strictly observed." 

Those constitution makers well knew they would 
meet great difficulties. They also realized the im- 
portance of their task to the nation as well as to 


California, and to later generations as well as to 
themselves. " The eyes of the world are turned 


government. Should this body of delegates now 
provide for one, or should it proceed at once to form 
a state constitution? This question was settled 


promptly and wisely by a decision to organize 
without delay as a state. So California has never 
been a regularly organized territory of the United 

Resolution against Slavery. — One of the most im- 
portant and far-reaching acts of the entire con- 
vention was in coining to the early decision that 
'* neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, unless 
for punishment of crime, shall ever be tolerated in 
this state." The relation of this decision against 
slavery to the national issue was so significant that 
it has been called " the pivot point of the slavery 
question in the United States." There were at the 
time fifteen free and fifteen slave states. It seemed 
decreed that California should enter the Union as 
the sixteenth free state, and thus forever destroy 
the balance between North and South. 

As the result of a wise sentiment among the dele- 
gates in favor of education, Uberal provision was 
made for a good system of pubUc schools and the 
founding of a state university was looked forward 
to by setting apart the income from certain lands. 

The Question of California's Boundary. — By far the 
longest and most heated debate of the convention 
was on the question of California's boundary. The 
territory that was ceded to the United States by 
Mexico at the close of the Mexican War, vaguely 
known as California, took in the great desert east 


of the Sierra Nevada as well as the fertile country 
of the Mormons beyond. In fact it embraced all 
the present territory of California, Nevada, Utah 
and Arizona, and extended even into Wyoming, 
Colorado and New Mexico — a total area of almost 
four hundred and fifty thousand square miles. On 
the face of it this was altogether too vast a territory 
for one state. 

Some of those who favored the larger boundary 
probably hoped that the state would at some later 
time be divided by an east-and-west Une, and that 
the southern half would at last become a slave state. 
So the contest was long and bitter. At the very 
last the constitution narrowly escaped being totally 
wrecked. Finally, on what seemed to be chance, 
the larger boundary was defeated, and the present 
line along the crest of the Sierra Nevada was 

Close of the Convention. — The long labors of 
the convention were now at an end; the constitu- 
tion was completed. It was Saturday, October 13, 
1849, and the closing events were highly dramatic. 
The Alta California gives us this graphic picture: 

"At a few minutes past three, preliminary matters having 
been disposed of, the delegates commenced the signing. Scarcely 
had the first man touched his pen to the paper when the loud 
booming of cannon resounded through the hall. At the same 
moment the flags of the different Head-Quarters, and on board 
the shipping in the port, were slowly imfurled and run up. As 


the firing of the national salute of thirty-one guns proceeded 
at the fort, and the signing of the constitution went on at the 
hall, the captain of an English bark then in port paid a most 
beautiful and befitting compliment to the occasion and the 
country by hobting at his main the American flag above those 
of every other nation, making, at the moment the thirty-first 
gun was fired, a line of colors from the main truck to the vessel's 
deck. And when, at last, the thirty-first gun came — the first 
GUN FOR California! — three as hearty and patriotic cheers as 
ever broke from human lips were given by the Convention for 
the New State. " 

The work of the convention is a fine illustration 
of the ability of the American people to govern 
themselves even under the most trying conditions. 
The constitution lasted as the fundamental law of 
our great Pacific commonwealth for a period of 
thirty years. All honor to those earnest, loyal 
pioneers whose devotion led them to give up their 
chances of sudden fortune for the more enduring, 
more noble work of building a great state! 



Adoption of the State Seat — The great seal of 
California, adopted in the constitutional conven- 

tion, was most appropriate as a symbol of the 
new state. This seal, designed by Major Garnett, 
shows Minerva in the foreground, while at her 
feet stands a grizzly bear feeding upon clusters 


of grapes. At his side is a miner with rocker 
and bowl. Ships are seen on the waters of the 
Sacramento^ and the snowy peaks of the Sierra 
Nevada form a fitting background. The legend 
" Eureka " is surmounted by thirty-one stars, the 
last one representing the new state of CaUfornia. 

Organization of State Government. — As soon as 
possible after the adjournment of the convention, 
printed copies of the constitution were carried to 
every town and mining camp and ranch. Prepara- 
tions for a general election were made, candidates 
for the various offices took the field, " stump " 
speeches began to multiply in the land, and in a 
short time the people were in the midst of a full- 
fledged American campaign. 

Because the election day, November 13, 1849, 
was stormy a light vote was cast; but the consti- 
tution was ratified almost unanimously. Peter H. 
Burnett was the people's choice for first state 
Governor. John McDougall was elected Ueutenant- 
governor, and Edward Gilbert and George W. Wright 
were chosen as representatives to Congress. 

In December the governor proclaimed the con- 
stitution to be " ordained and established as the 
constitution of the state of California." On the 
fifteenth of the same month the- newly elected 
senators and assemblymen met in San Jos6, the 
new seat of government. 


The state government of California was thus 
established many months before California was 
admitted into the Union of States. California 

was to all local intents and purposes a full-fledged 
and loyal state, although not actually admitted 
till September 9, 1850. 

California Seeks Admission to the Union. — Fre- 
mont and Gwin were duly elected United States 
senators. These, with the representatives, set out 
for Washington in January of 1850, with a long 
memorial requesting " in the name of the people 


of California, the admissioa of the state of Cali- 
fornia into the American Union." 

In the meantime what was 
Congress doing? Congress 
was exceedingly busy with 
some of the greatest prob- 
lems that ever came before 
that body for solution, and 
by no means least of these 
was the very question of 
admitting California. How 
could proud Southern states- 


ons at the Gnt seoaton tot men cousent to See tlus 

CiliforaU  . 

young giant come in as a 
free state and thus destroy the balance between 
North and South in the United States Senate? And 
yet it had become clear that California would never 
legalize human slavery. 

The hard problem was rendered more complex 
by many other issues of the eventful year 1850, 
which marked the beginning of the end of human 
slavery in America. The leading measures of Clay's 
famous Omnibus Bill, one by one, passed — not 
without opposition at every step — as separate acts 
of Congress. 

At last, as one of the stormiest sessions of Con- 
gress ever held was drawing to a close, the question 
of California's admission was nearing final settle- 


ment. Although the people of California had been 
repeatedly disappointed and there had been delays 
both trying and unjust, no good reasons for further 
delay could now be found, and admission coxild 
not be prevented. After long labor and much 
strife the California Bill, having safely weathered 
the storms of the Senate, was finally passed in the 
House of Representatives, September 7, 1860. 


Two days later it received the approval of President 
Fillmore, and California was welcomed into the 
sisterhood of states — " the youthful queen of the 
Pacific, in robes of freedom gorgeously inlaid with 

News of Admission Reaches San Francisco. — One 
autumn day, after those weary months of trouble- 
some delay, when hope of admission had almost 
gone, when indeed feelings of indignation and anger 
had been causing California to think of being an 


independent state, the glad message arrived through 
the Golden Gate. In the words of another: " In- 
telligence of the admission of California reached 
San Francisco on the morning of October 18. The 
revulsion of feeling was instant and extreme; busi- 
ness was suspended and the whole population con- 
gregated on Portsmouth Square to congratulate each 
other." The statehood was at last a happy reality: 
the step once taken could never be recalled. 

It should be remembered that while President 
Fillmore signed the bill that admitted California, 
it is chiefly to President Taylor, who had died in 
office earlier the same year, that she owes her 
existence as a sovereign state. He it was that 
urged Congress to pass the bill, and so furthered 
the efforts of loyal citizenship in bringing into 
being the Empire State of the Pacific. 

Celebration of Admission Day. — This chapter can- 
not be more appropriately closed than in the words 
of Nathaniel Bennett, whose oration delivered in 
San Francisco, October 29, 1850, at the celebration 
of California's admission, will long remain a classic : 

"We had a state government regularly organized in all ita 
departments, with powers sufficiently enlarged to enable it 
to perform all the requisite functions of a state government 
under the federal constitution, but not comprehensive enough 
to subserve the pressing wants of an independent community. 
With a great maritime commerce, we yet had no Admiralty 
Courts; with extensive correspondence with the states and 


amongst ourselves, the postal facilities were miserably inade- 
quate. . . . Claiming to be a state ourselves, and the adminis- 
tration of every department of our government being based 
upon such assumption, we were, nevertheless, not recognized 
as such by Congress, and could not have been so considered by 
the federal judiciary. We were in the awkward predicament 
of a state out of the Union, when justice dictated and imperious 
necessity demanded that we should be received to the enjoy- 
ment of the privileges of a state in the Union. We stood alone 
amongst the republican family of Anglo-Americans, whilst, at 
the same time, we were not of them. ... It was at such a time 
that the tidings of the event which we celebrate reached us, 
and the rebound of our feelings to-day is in proportion to the 
depth of our past depression. If, when the tempest has gathered 
over the troubled waters, and the angry billows, lashed into 
fury, rave around the devoted bark, the winds are suddenly 
lulled, the waves hushed and the warm sunshine again sleeps 
on the bosom of the tranquil sea, the thrill of delight which 
the hardy mariner feels is enhanced by the recollection of the 
imminent dangers from which he has just escaped. " 





The " Gold Fever." — The famous discovery that 
transformed California into ''El Dorado/' the "land 
of gold/' was made several months before peace was 
finally proclaimed between the United States and 
Mexico. In the early autumn of 1848 the first 
public notice to the people of the East appeared 
in a prominent newspaper; but not until personal 
letters and shipments of '' dust '' began to arrive did 
the gold fever break out on the Atlantic seaboard. 
By the time that memorable winter of 1848-49 had 
fairly set in the intensity and contagion of the fever 
were breaking all records. 

California became a huge magnet, irresistibly 
drawing men to itself from every quarter. "Hur- 
rah for California!'' was the cry that roused the 
restless spirit in thousands. Then followed the 
active preparations for the trip. 

Hither came that army of argonauts, containing 



much of the best spirit of the East and the flower 
of the West. As they came, young, vigorous and 
ambitious, they saw visions by day and dreamed 
dreams at night as extravagant and as fabulous 
as the tales of Arabian Nights. 

No time to stop in San Francisco! Push on to 
the diggings! There are glowing accounts of new 
and rich finds: and then, besides, Ufe without 
work was altogether too expensive in the flush 
times in San Francisco to admit of leisure and delay. 
The high wages for labor, even the flattering in- 
ducements to enter business in San Francisco or 
the new city of Sacramento, were as nothing when 
weighed in the balance against the gUttering 
prospect of the golden treasure. 

The Miner's Outfit. — " The miner must have an outfit of 
a pick, pan, shovel, rocker, dipper and bucket of wood, or of 
rawhide. A tent was good to have, but he could make shift 
during the dry season with a substitute of boughs, for there was 
no fear bf rain from May to October. A blanket of rubber 
spread on a layer of leaves, on which his woolen blankets were 
laid, sufficed for a bed. His culinary utensils were confined to a 
frying pan, a small iron pot, tin cups and plates, knife, fork 
and spoon. His wardrobe consisted generally of a pair of 
serviceable shirts, a change of trousers, strong boots and a 
slouch hat. With these, and a supply of bacon, flour, salt, 
saleratus, beans, a few candles and occasionally fresh beef, 
the miner was ready for work." 

After being given this glimpse by one of the 
miners themselves, it is almost superfluous for him 

miners' life in early CALIFORNIA 247 

to add that the bill of fare '' did not vary much 
for breakfast, dinner and supper.'' 

Fortunate was the miner who had not bound 
himself in some large company or partnership con- 
cern before coming to California; for almost all of 
these mining companies, in spite of the best mo- 
tives for unselfish cooperation, were ruined by dis- 
agreement, and then each man had to take his own 

Hard Work at the Mines. — The actual work of 
the early gold hunter was of the most irksome and 
wearing kind. Reverend William Taylor, widely 
known as " Father " Taylor, gave it as his opinion 
that for years they did more hard work '' than has 
ever been done in any country by the same number 
of men, in the same length of time, since the world 
was made." 

Let one travel even to-day through the worked- 
out mining regions, and see how hills and moun- 
tains were leveled with the valleys by placer min- 
ing, how thousands of miles of ditches were digged 
and aqueducts constructed through canon and 
ravine, how great streams of water were turned 
into marvelously built flumes and monster pipes, 
thence to be run to the greater placer mines, and 
how hundreds of acres of the bedrock beneath the 
mountains were laid bare " and scraped and swept 
like a ship's deck:" then will one know beyond a 


doubt that the gold fields of early California were 
no paradise for drones. 

The hardships were real hardships. The blazing 
rays of the summer sun and the ice-cold water 
from the snow-capped mountains, to which hun- 
dreds of workers were daily exposed, proved indeed 
trying to even the strongest constitutions. Steady 
working in wet drifts and tunnels was necessarily 
injurious to the health. The poor diet of salt meat, 
without any vegetables for long periods of time, 
brought on the disease of land sciu-vy, from which 
a very large proportion of the miners experienced 
more or less suflfering. 

The Prospector's Hope. — But what was suffer- 
ing, what were obstacles, to those bold spirits bent 
upon the most fascinating of all employments? 
What if the golden dreams were not quickly real- 
ized? The hardy miner still abounded in hope and 
restless energy. What if he was beset with failure 
and sore discouragement? He was looking to better 
luck just ahead. He would not be worthy of a 
place in the great mining fraternity if he could not 
talk convincingly of a '' good prospect,'' if he did 
not confidently expect to " strike it '' very soon! 

Early Methods of Mining; Surface Diggings. — It 
is only natural that for several years after the 
discovery of gold the miners confined their opera- 
tions almost entirely to the surface diggings, along 

miners' life in EARLT CALIFORNIA 249 

the numerous watercourses. This kind of minii^ 
could be carried on only about six months of the 
year, while the rivers were low. The common 
method was to turn the stream from its regular 
channel by wing dams, for the river bed wm often 

Copj/riffhi b]/ Undtraoad A UndenBoad 

"struck it at last!" 

A tnis JDcident. This mui actually lound a rich mine on tliii spot. 

fabulously rich in its hidden treasures. Here is a 
single incident taken from an uncounted number: 
" A member of a fluming company on the north 
fork of Feather River told me that in the summer's 
work they did not make enough to pay expenses 
until the last fortnight of the season, when, from 


beneath a single boulder, they took out $30,000. 
He showed me the hole whence it was dug." 

Dry Washing. — The process of dry washing is 
explained by this Uttle scene from real Uf e : 

"One was shoveling up the sand into a large cloth, stretched 
out upon the ground, and which, when it was tolerably well 
covered, he took up by the corners, and shook until the pebbles 
and larger particl^ of stone and dirt came to the surface. These 
he brushed away carefully with his hand, repeating the process 
of shaking and clearing until the residue was sufficiently fine 
for the next operation. This was performed by the other men, 
who, depositing the sand in large bowls hewn out of a solid 
block of wood, which they held in their hands, dextrously cast 
the contents up before them, about four feet into the air, catch- 
ing the sand again very cleverly, and blowing at it as it de- 
scended. " — Brooks. 

Almost all the machines and contrivances that 
were invented and sent to California for digging 
and washing gold proved useless, only two or three 
kinds being really successful. 

The Cradle. — Among these the best known and 
perhaps most widely used was the washing rocker, 
or cradle, which took its name from its resemblance 
to the baby's cradle used by pur grandmothers. 
The dirt supposed to contain gold was shoveled 
into the hopper; the " cradler,'' sitting beside his 
machine, with one hand poured water by means of 
a ladle upon the dirt, and vdth the other rocked 
the cradle. The water and the motion of the cradle 

miners' life in EABLY CALIFORNIA 251 

dissolved the dirt and carried it down through the 
riddle or sieve. Here it fell upon the apron, which 
carried it to the head of the cradle box; then it ran 
out and away, leaving the gold and the heavier 


particles of sand and gravel behind the bars of the 
riffle — low cleats along the bottom of the sluice. 

Other Devices. — Other mearis of early mining 
included the use of the " long torn," ending in a 
riddle, or sieve; the gold borer, used in the same 
manner as an auger; and the pan, which foimd con- 
stant use in all branches of gold mining. Fanning- 
out is not a difficult process, but skill is acquired 
only from careful and continuous practice. In pros- 
pecting, the pan was used to test the earth from 
time to time; if the earth failed to " show the color," 
the prospector moved on, ever on the alert for 


" pay dirt." Of course every miner had constant 
use for his pick, shovel and crowbar, and marvelous 
things were often done with the humble jackknife. 
The Useftil Jackknife. — How usefid the miner's 
jackknife was, in working a crevice, is shown by a 
little experience of a pioneer in December, 1848. 
After a day's prospecting, he tells us, a large rock 
was brought to view around which a crevice ex- 
tended. In his own words : 

"It appeared to be filled with a hard, bluish clay and gravel, 
which I took out with my knife; and there at the bottom, strewn 
along the whole length of the rock, was bright, yellow gold in 
little pieces about the size of a grain of barley. Eureka! oh, how 
my heart beat! I sat still and looked at it some minutes before 
I touched it, greedily drinking in the pleasure of gazing upon 
gold that was in my very grasp and feeling a sort of inde- 
pendent bravado in allowing it to remain there. When my eyes 
were sufficiently feasted, I scooped it out with the point of my 
knife and an iron spoon and placing it in my pan, ran home with 
it much delighted. I weighed it and found that my first day's 
labor in the mines had made me thirty-one doUars richer than 
I was in the morning." 

Sunday at the Mines. — On Sunday any impor- 
tant mining camp in the days of '49 presented a 
scene that would be difficult to dupUcate. Look 
upon a scene from real life: 

" Negroes from the southern states swaggering in the expan- 
sive feeling of run-away freedom; mulattoes from Jamaica 
trudging arm in arm with Kanakas from Hawaii; Peruvians 
and Chileans claiming affinity with the swarthier Mexicans; 


Frenchmen, Germans and Italians fraternizing witli one another 
and with the cockney fresh from the purlieus of St. Giles; an 
Irishman, with the dewdfop still in his eye, tracing relation- 
ship with the ragged Australian; Yankees from the Penobscot 
chatting and bargaining with the genial Oregonians; a few 
Celestials scattered here and there, their pigtails and conical 
hats recalling the strange pictures that took my boyish fancy; 
. . . last of all, a few Indians." 

Eagerness for Gain. — The early miner was usu- 
ally too restless to content himself with fair returns 


or with moderate success. Many a man who rarely 
brought to camp in the evening less than an ounce 
($16) was swept away by the news that a neighbor 
had taken six and a half ounces from a crevice 
with his jackknife in less than half an hour; or that 
another lucky dog had stumbled upon a $5000 
nugget. How could you expect one to keep con- 


tentedly at work for an ounce a day and miss 
his chance at the big "strikes?" 

One nugget found in 1854 in Calaveras County 
weighed 195 pounds and was worth over $43,000; 
another from Sierra County weighed 133 pounds. 
These were probably the largest ever found in 

Gambling. — But the miner's uneasiness too often 
proved his ruin. The desire for speculation amounted 
to intoxication, sometimes almost to madness. Gam- 
bling became very prevalent in mining camp, as 
in city; indeed, mining itself was too many times 
but another form of gambling. Unfortunately the 
miner's life, as the years went by, made drinking 
easy; and in turn drinking increased the wild 
extravagance of many a miner's life. 

The Spirit of Brotherhood. — Yet even in the midst 
of the feverish pursuit of the golden treasure there 
were many and real tokens of human kindness and 
brotherly sympathy. Beneath the rough exterior 
there was many a member of nature's nobility; 
he who could look into the heart of things would 
not fail to' perceive those nobler traits that have 
ever spurned avarice and frowned upon the mean 
and selfish Ufe. Those rude miners were always 
" ready to help others with purse or counsel, to 
share the last flapjack or frijoUj or to espouse the 
cause of the injured." 

miners' life in early CALIFORNIA 255 

The Argonauts. — While it cannot be denied that 
there was much disorder and even crime in those 
early communities, and while unwarranted forms 
of lynch law were used in not a few instances, 
still it is neither fair nor accurate to describe the 
typical miner as " some drunken, brawling wretch,^' 
nor is it just to denounce in a wholesale manner 
popular courts of justice as destroyers of law and 
order and producers of lawlessness and anarchy. 
The noble band of pioneers and the California 
vigilance committees have taught a very different 
lesson from this. Hear the trembling voice of 
yonder venerable and half-forgotten miner, as, 
bowed with the weight of many years and heavy 
burdens, he faintly but pathetically sings: 

"We are wreck and stray, 
We are cast away, 

Poor, battered old hulks and spars; 
But we hope and pray, 
On the judgment day, 

We shall strike it up in the stars. 

Chorus "Tho' battered and old, 
(Xir hearts are bold. 

Yet oft do we repine 
For the days of old, 
For the days of gold. 

For the days of forty-nine. " 



Growth of Towns and Cities. — During the first 
years following the organization of California as 
a state, in 1849, the towns and cities had a remark- 
able growth. Social activity as well as commer- 
cial life and enterprise naturally centered in San 
Francisco, the chief seaport of the state and the 
gateway to the mines. 

But the interior towns, like Sacramento and 
Marysville, also grew with astonishing rapidity, 
while many of the mining camps that nestled 
everywhere in the gold-producing regions of the 
Sierra Nevada were suddenly springing up into 
thriving towns and cities. 

Placer Mining. — Placer or hydraulic mining was 
developed to an incredible extent; and as a result 
untold millions of tons of earth were sluiced off 
into the rivers in the eager search for the shin- 
ing particles of gold hidden beneath. Even to- 
day one may observe scores of localities where 
great mountains have been literally swept away 
by the fierce onslaughts of the great hydraulic 
rams, leaving hideous, gaping chasms and gorges. 

• 256 


" Slickens. " ^ A more serious consequence of 
this method of mining hes in the fact that rivers 
Uke the Feather, the Yuba and the Sacramento 
were rapidly being filled with mining d6bris and 
" slickens.'' This had the bad effect of turning 
streams that had always been deep and clear into 
shallow, muddy creeks. To be sure, there had 
been times of flood water in California ages before 
the discovery of gold; but certainly this placer 
mining, by filUng up the river beds and thus greatly 
diminishing the capacity of the channels, vastly 
increased the danger of overflow and destruction 
to the growing cities and new farms along the banks. 

Floods Along the Sacramento and San Joaquin. — 
The inhabitants of Sacramento saw the danger 
and therefore raised the grade of the city streets 
by several feet; nevertheless in 1862 the city 
suffered very serious loss and still greater incon- 
venience, while during the course of that winter 
apparently the whole valley was overflowed by 
flood waters. 

In spite of the high levees built since that time 
along the Sacramento and the San Joaquin for 
hundreds of miles, and in spite of all efforts to 
secure proper drainage and reclamation of the 
lands, there has continued, even till now, to be 
serious danger of flood over tens of thousands of 
acres of California's most fertile lands. There is 


now no doubt that this risk can be greatly de- 
creased and will in time be entu-ely removed by 
adequate measures, taken jointly by the federal and 
the state governments. 

San Francisco's Baptism by Fire. — In the mean- 
time San Francisco was called upon to undergo an 
awful baptism by fire during the early days of gold. 
From 1849 to 1851 there occurred a series of great 
conflagrations that proved far more destructive than 
any of later years till the fateful eighteenth of April, 

These fires were due in a measure to the condi- 
tions that were found m the rapidly growing city; the 
dwellings were mere shells, mainly of cotton cloth and 
very inflammable, while the business houses were 
an equally easy mark for the flames. In the absence 
of a fire department, or even a company of fire 
fighters, there was no effective way of checking a 
conflagration, once started on its mad career. And 
besides there doubtless were in San Francisco, dur- 
ing those days, many evil-minded men who would 
not hesitate to set fire to buildings for selfish ends 
and base plunder. 

The First Fire.— The "First Great Fire" occurred 
the day before Christmas, 1849, and raged until it 
had destroyed about fifty houses, then valued at 
about a million dollars because of the high rentals. 
The majority of buildings burned were on Kearny 


Street, between Clay and Washington, and on the 
south side of Washington, between Kearny and 
Montgomery Streets. 

The Second Fire. — Almost instantly the city sprang 
again into being; but unfortunately the new houses 
were as inflammable as those just destroyed, and 
on Saturday, May 4, of 
the next year, they served 
to feed the flames of the 
" Second Great Fire." 

This time about three 
hundred houses were de- 
stroyed, which, together 
with other property con- 
sumed, were valued at more 
than three million dollars, ,acob p. lebbb 

the loss falling most heavily ^°''""*s^^^^^„™™'""^" 
upon the merchants. San 

Francisco had not yet learned the value of a good 
fire department nor the necessity for strictly main- 
tained fire limits. 

The Third Fire. — It must not be thought 
strange, therefore, that there should come, hard 
upon the heels of the May conflagration, the 
" Third Great Fire," starting Friday morning, June 
14, in a bakery on Kearny Street, between Sacra- 
mento and Clay Streets. The entire space of two 
blocks, between California and Clay Streets, was 


swept by the wind-driven flames, from Kearny to the 
water front, entailing a loss equal to that of the 
second fire. 

The Fourth Fire. — After this costly experience 
cloth houses or tents were prohibited within the 
fire Umits of the city, and a number of brick struc- 
tures were quickly started. Moreover many of the 
citizens were now diligent and active in their efforts 
to organize fire companies and to make the depart- 
ment effective. But the light redwood lumber so 
extensively used in building proved almost as com- 
bustible as the cloth houses. While the agitation 
for a better public service was yet in progress, 
the " Fourth Great Fire " broke out in the early 
morning of September 17 of the same year (1850) in 
a drinking place on Jackson Street, known as the 
Philadelphia House. Nothing could stop the rapid 
spread of the flames till the area between Mont- 
gomery, Washington, Dupont and Pacific Streets 
had been swept, involving the loss of one hundred 
and fifty houses. 

The Fifth Fire. — Most disastrous of all was the 
" Fifth Great Fire," which occurred on May 4, 
1851, the anniversary of the second. Breaking out 
in the dead of night in an upholstery store on Clay 
Street, the flames were driven fiercely by a high 
wind, first toward the bay, then northward and 
eastward. " Attempts to stop their progress were 


utterly powerless. All night the conflagration 
blazed; and the scene was said by those who wit- 
nessed it to have been grand beyond description. 
The reflection from it in the sky was said to have 
been visible at Monterey, a hundred miles distant. 
In the morning the sun rose on a city in smoking 
ruins. The very heart of it, the center of trade 
and business, was eaten out, leaving little else but 
sparsely built outskirts." — Hittell. 

In a few hours, more than a thousand houses were 
consumed, property valued at more than ten million 
dollars was destroyed and unknown numbers of 
human Uves were lost. 

The Sixth Fire. — After this costly lesson, and 
especially after the Sunday fire of June 22 following, 
known as the " Sixth Great Fire," the buildings 
erected, as a writer of that day expressed it, '' show 
a wonderful improvement in strength and gran- 
deur " — for San Francisco could not remain in 
ashes by the side of her matchless harbor while 
the mines continued to pour into her lap the enor- 
mous and ever-increasing wealth of gold. For 
building material, granite was now imported from 
China and brick from the Atlantic seaboard, from 
England and from Australia. 

Meanwhile the frequency of these terrible con- 
flagrations caused the people to grow very uneasy 
and anxious to find out the real reasons. It was 


rumored that the great fire of May had an incen- 
diary origin. The people very generally came to 
believe this, especially after the fire on the exact 
anniveraary of the second of the series. The 
series of fires, and particularly that greatest of 
all of them, the second May conflagration, was one 

of the causes of the organization of the famous 
Vigilance Committee of 1851, in the month of June. 
The Phoenix. — The alacrity with which San 
Francisco sprang forth again and again from her 
ashes and desolation was fittingly commemorated 
by the city's common council, when in 1852 it 
adopted as the design for its corporation seal " a 
phcenix rising from the flames in front of the Golden 


Gate, with emblems of commerce on each side and 
the words ' Seal of the City of San Francisco ' 
around the margin." The phcenix may indeed be 
deemed a fit emblem for the marvelous rebuilding 
of San Francisco accomplished since the most de- 
structive of all conflagrations of modern times, the 
fire following the earthquake of 1906. 



San Francisco. — During the days of gold, San 
Francisco was the center of the industrial and 
social activities of California. More than this, 
it was emphatically the storm center. 

From the time of the American conquest in 1846 
until the organization of the state in 1849 there 
was — as we have already seen — no . satisfactory 
civil government in CaUfornia. Repeated attempts 
in Congress had resulted in failure, and at last 
the more thoughtful of the people felt impelled 
to undertake the work of giving themselves a 

In the meanwhile, in feverish San Francisco, 
which was filling up with all sorts and classes 
of people possessed of but one thought, many citi- 
zens, even the best and most law-abiding, seemed 
to lose their active interest in the government of 
the city and their anxiety for its future. All 
classes of men caught the gold fever; few indeed 
escaped it. 

The " Hounds." — We must not be greatly sur- 
prised, therefore, that about the middle of the year 



1849 an organized band of desperadoes took ad- 
vantage of the situation and terrorized the town by 
their bold acts and high-handed crimes. This band 
was known as the " Hounds/' but was self-styled 
the ' ' Regulators. ' ' ' ' One of their fundamental prin- 
ciples, practiced before it was formulated, and the 
first and broadest plank in their platform, was that 
others should feed and clothe them. The working- 
men of California, the honest and industrious, 
should furnish them shelter, with strong drink, 
tobacco and other luxuries." — Bancroft. 

In short, the " Hounds '' were a band of bullies 
and public robbers, who repeatedly offended against 
the people of San Francisco under the flimsy pre- 
text that they were opposed to foreigners. This 
gang paralyzed the town with terror. Their out- 
rages grew bolder and more defiant; but yet the 
long-suffering, peace-loving citizens, absorbed in 
their own private affairs, paid little attention to 
the acts of the organization. 

But when at length the excesses became so vio- 
lent that there was no safety and almost no protec- 
tion, the feeling spread and deepened that somehow 
the lawlessness must cease, that bounds must be 
set beyond which these ruffians must not be per- 
mitted to go. 

The " Hounds " are Routed. — The crisis came on 
the afternoon of Sunday, July 15, when a large 


band of these haughty " Reguhitors," after a 
ridiculous parade through the streets, committed 
a cowardly assault on the Chileans, whom they 

beat and cuffed and kicked, then wantonly fired 
upon, seriously wounding many innocent men. 
When the news spread the town rose to the greatest 
pitch of excitement. Through the efforts of Sam 


Brannan and others, the community was promptly 
organized for self-protection. Nearly twenty of the 
desperadoes were speedily arrested and tried, and 
the leader of the gang, Samuel Roberts, was found 
guilty of the eight charges against him. The noto- 
rious '^ Regulators '' "were completely routed and 
the incident was closed. 

The respectable men had now seen that by 
united and determined effort they could easily 
put down a disorderly gang of evildoers, and this 
afterwards had the effect of encouraging the forma- 
tion of the Vigilance Committee. 

The Lesson is Forgotten. — Still the lesson of the 
" Hounds '' was not sufficiently taken to heart, for 
almost immediately San Francisco plunged again 
into her excesses. At the same time there was 
pouring in through the Golden Gate, along with 
those sturdy pioneers who will ever be CaUfornia's 
pride and glory, a tide of humanity from Sydney 
and other ports of the Pacific, that included many 
of the worst specimens of ignorant and debased 
men and women. Truly they proved a moral 
pestilence to the community. 

The good men — of whom there was always a 
strong majority — neglected the duties of their 
citizenship, while the base and criminal became 
bold and active and consequently more dangerous 
to the public good. The failure of justice is shown 


by the fact that scores of robbers and murderers 
were allowed to go scot free. Not a single murderer 
of all the hundreds in California had been made 
to suffer on the gallows; the very courts of justice, 
we are told, had themselves become a byword, and 
the offender had Uttle fear of the law. 

Committee of Vigilance Organized. — At length 
the conscience of the people was aroused to its 
very depth. On February 19, 1851, a merchant 
by the name of Jansen was assaulted and robbed 
in his own store by two men who entered in the guise 
of customers. The indignation of the people knew 
no bounds. Men supposed to be guilty were soon 
arrested and brought up before the court; but the 
angry people collected in great numbers and sud- 
denly, with a shout, rushed into the court room to 
seize the prisoners and stopped only when charged 
with fixed bayonets by the Washington Guards. 
This failure was most fortunate, for that evening 
there was a calmer spirit. A meeting was held, 
which was addressed by several prominent citizens, 
and William T. Coleman made a motion to appoint 
a committee that should agree on some plan of 
action. This was one of the first definite steps 
leading to the organization of the famous Vigilance 
Committee of 1851. 

Instead of taking warning from the intense feel- 
ing of the city, those who were bent on crime be- 


came still bolder, while the great fire of the fourth of 
May made the people even more sensitive. Accord- 
ij^gly> on June 10, there was formally organized 
" The Committee of Vigilance of San Francisco," 
and about two hundred prominent business men 
were enrolled. Its objects, as stated in the Consti- 
tution, were " to watch,*pursue and bring to justice 
the outlaws infesting the city, through the regularly 
constituted courts if possible, through more sum- 
mary course if necessary." The citizens by signing 
the constitution united themselves into an " asso- 
ciation for the maintenance of the peace and good 
order of society, and the preservation of the Uves 
and property of the citizens of San Francisco," and 
bound themselves, " each unto the other to do and 
perform every lawful act for the maintenance of 
law and order, and to sustain the laws when faith- 
fully and properly administered;" they were, how- 
ever, " determined that no thief, burglar, incendiary 
or assassin shall escape punishment, either by the 
quibbles of the law, the insecurity of the prisons, 
the carelessness or corruption of the police or 
the laxity of those who pretend to administer jus- 
tice." For the accomplishment of these piu-poses 
each* member pledged his word, his fortune and 
his life. 

Trial and Execution of John Jenkins. — Great work 
there was for the committee to do. Scarcely had 


the members left their first meeting when, about 
ten o'clock at night, two sharp taps on the fire 
bell brought them back posthaste to head-quar- 
ters. A vicious-looking man named John Jenkins 
had burglarized a store, and faihng to make good 
his escape, was quickly taken to the room of the 

In one hour Jenkins had been tried for his offense; 
in two hours, at the stroke of midnight, he M%as pro- 
nounced guilty of murder and sentenced to be hung. 
Two hours later a solemn procession marched to 
Portsmouth Square, where the condemned man — 
an ex-convict from Sydney — in the presence of a 
thousand grim but approving witnesses, expiated 
his crime by death. 

Effect. — This swift action had immediate effect 
in San Francisco and throughout California. Scores 
of the best citizens showed their approval by com- 
ing forward to be enrolled as members of the com- 
mittee, while men of Jenkins' class were filled with 

Within a week the Alta California, a leading 
paper, said: 

"It is certainly a fact that since the excitement which re- 
sulted in the execution . . . crimes of the more heinous nature 
have visibly decreased. . . . Whereas previously scarce a night 
occurred that we had not a knocking down, drugging, robbery 
or burglary, since that night there has been but one case of 
robbery of which we have heard. " 


James Stuart. — On the eleventh of the following 
July, at about nine o'clock in the morning, the bell 
of the Monumental Engine House again summoned 
the Vigilance' Committee. This time the culprit 
was James Stuart, who by his own confessions was 
shown to be one of the greatest villains of all Cali- 
fornia. He, too, was condemned to death. 

Work of the Committee. — In all, four men were exe- 
cuted by the Vigilance Committee of 1851, but this 
is by no means all they accomplished. About thirty 
bad characters were banished from CaUfornia and 
many more than that left of their own accord for 
various points in the interior, only to find themselves 
again thwarted in their careers of crime. 

The active work of the committee was over; yet 
for a long time the members stood ready, if occa- 
sion should demand, to take up new duties for the 
honor and fair name of their city. 

In the Interior Towns. — It was natural that simi- 
lar movements should start in the interior towns 
and mining camps. In fact, there were a great 
many attempts at popular justice in different parts 
of the state. Not in all cases, however, were these 
so successful or so free from mob control as that in 
San Francisco. The distinction between a vigilance 
committee and mob or lynch law, was often lost 
sight of, and many crimes were committed in the 
name of justice. In spite of all this, the work of 


the Committee of Vigilance of 1851 was a work 
of magnitude and of splendor; the heroic leaders of 
that remarkable movement deserve the gratitude 
of aU order-loving citizens for the high purpose and 
calm firmness which were ever the basis for the 
work they accomplished. 



Vigilance Gradually Relaxed. — The last entry in 
the book of the first San Francisco Vigilance Com- 
mittee bears the date of June 30, 1852, but even 
then the committee was not formally ended. The 
members, schooled in the stern experiences of 1851 
and ever on the alert to observe the signs of the 
times, still stood ready, on occasion, to assert them- 

For many months the committee acted as a check 
upon the vicious elements of the population of San 
Francisco. But as the terrible warnings of the hang- 
man's noose began to fade from the memory and vigi- 
lance began to relax, the law again fell on evil times. 

Activity of the Criminal Forces. — The criminal 
forces, taking a lesson from recent history, showed 
themselves wiser than before but also more demor- 
alizing. '^ Behind the shield raised against crime, 
crime itself was stationed with the sword of justice 
in its hand. Sitting in judgment, villains sold jus- 
tice for money or sent triumphant vice abroad in the 
livery of virtue.'' — Bancroft. 

The method of corruption now was to capture 



primary elections, stuff the ballot boxes and thus 
gain control of the pubUc oflBces. By means of 
ingeniously contrived false-bottomed ballot boxes 
evil men were voting themselves into oflSce. It 
became unsafe for honest voters to approach the 
polls, for if too many such appeared a set of 
bullies and " shoulder strikers " were on hand to 
knock them down; they rendered life itself unsafe. 

Political conventions became a farce; public 
officers were, as a rule, incompetent and corrupt. 
And the maddening chase for gold and the un- 
settled conditions of the times drew the attention 
of the best elements away from the plain duties 
of citizenship. It is said that within a few years 
over a thousand men were killed in San Francisco 
with but one legal execution. The time had come 
for an outraged and long-suffering community to 
raise its voice in protest — '^ protest against wicked- 
ness in high places as hitherto it had been against 
vulgar vice.'' The conscience of the city began 
to speak through the columns of the daily Bulletin, 
a new paper which was well supported by the re- 
spectable classes. The editor of the paper was 
James King, known everywhere as James King of 
William. He was the prophet of civic reform: he 
likewise became its martyr. 

James King is Murdered. — The crisis came on 
May 14, 1856. King was shot down on the city 


streets by a man named James Casey, a former 
convict in New York, whom King had denounced 
and exposed. That pistol shot was the signal for 
a sudden and overwhelming storm of popular 
excitement and indignation, not alone in San 
Francisco but throughout California. And when, 
six days later, in spite of the watchful care of 
physician and friends and the prayerful sympathy 
that was almost universal, it was sadly announced 
that King was dead, the situation was remarkable 
in the extreme. The deed, as Professor Royce 
well says, " aroused the greatest exhibition of 
popular excitement in the whole history of Cali- 

Casey was hardly in the police prison when a 
crowd of men, wild with excitement and indigna- 
tion, began to gather. The crowd increased with 
fearful rapidity and loudly demanded the person 
of Casey. He was with difficulty taken in a carriage 
to the County Jail on Broadway Street, between 
Kearny and Dupont Streets. There again was 
found a great crowd, increasing every moment and 
almost in a frenzy demanding justice. The demand 
could not be resisted. 

Organization of the Great Committee of Vigilance. 
— Rumors that the Vigilance Committee was being 
reorganized passed from mouth to mouth and had 
the effect of reducing the excitement and preventing 


violence that night, although ten thousand persons 
were beUeved to have congregated in Montgomery 
Street, and by ten o'clock the jail was guarded by 
three thousand armed men. 

Coleman was the first 
to take oath of fealty to 
the new committee. He 
next administered the oath 
to the first half-dozen mem- 
ber and the books were 
opened for enrollment. In 
the committee there was rep- 
resented every nationality, 
every shade of political and 
religious beUef , every trade, 
profession and occupation; honesty and respecta- 
bihty were alone required. 

It was early resolved that the committee should 
visit the County Jail in a body, take Casey and 
Charles Cora, the latter also charged with murder, 
give them a fair trial and administer just punish- 

It was no use for the sheriff to ai^e in the face 
of thirty-five hundred armed and determined men 
surrounding the jail, backed by seven-eighths of 
the community. 

Xhe Committee's Firet Court <iS Justice. — Casey 
and Cora were tried, we are assured, with all the 


attempts to observe legal forms that marked the 
trials of the first committee. The verdict in each 
case was murder in the first degree; both were sen- 
tenced to be hanged. 

Next morning many members of the Vigilance 
Committee of '51 answered a call to assemble, but 
new conditions rendered 
the old committee un- 
fitted for the work. 

Then it was that the 
new organization began 
to take shape. To 
William T. Coleman, 
more than to any other, 
the great committee of 
1856 owed both its or- 
ganization and its wise 


leadership. ..qld yioilantb" 

At this point let Mr. 
Coleman tell in his own words of the organization 
of the committee: 

"I finally consented to take charge and oi^nize the com- 
mittee, provided I should have absolute control — authority 
supreme. We organized, and within twenty-four hours we 
had fifteen hundred members, all well-known leading men of 
the city. They took a strong oath pledging their lives, for- 
tunes and sacred honor to the cause, and promising to stand 
by one another under all circumstances, and not to divulge 
any transactions of the committee. The organization waa to 
be entirely Impersonal and each man was to be known only by 


his number. Such was the intelligence and zeal of all that 
soldiers were formed of men who but a few days before hardly 
knew how to handle a gun." 

Execution of Casey and Cora. — While the funeral 
procession of Mr. King, marching four abreast and 
extending a mile in length, moved solemnly through 
the city streets, the committee was engaged in the 
stern business of the execution of Casey and Cora, 
in front of the Vigilance headquarters. The work 
of purifying the city had been begun in deadly 
earnest: there could be no turning back now. 

Force and Equipment of the Committee. — So com- 
pletely did the movement gain the sympathy and 
support of the city that in July the committee 
numbered six thousand men under arms, well 
equipped and organized into one battaUon, f oiu* 
'companies of artillery, one squadron, two troops 
of dragoons, four regiments and thirty-two com- 
panies of infantry. A full corps of officers was 
chosen, the executive committee of twenty-six 
members named and a police force equipped. 

Not only were the great body of the San Francis- 
cans heart and soul with the movement, but it was 
also strongly indorsed by the leading towns of the 
interior. San Jos6 telegraphed an offer of a thou- 
sand men for the Vigilance Committee. 

Establishment of "Fort Gunnybags." — The com- 
mittee's headquarters, '' Fort Vigilance," fronting 


on Sacramento Street, received a nickname of " Fort 
Gunnybags " from the character of its breast-works. 
In front of the building was constructed a strange 
fortification — dray loads of sacks filled with sand 
— with embrasures at the ends for cannon; while 
on the roof were cannon and sentinels, as well as 


the deep-toned alarm bell. Within a quarter of 
an hour from the time the bell sounded the call 
— three solemn taps —  seven-tenths of the entire 
force was armed and in its place, ready for any 

Devotion to the Cause. — The activity of the great 
committee was equaled only by the vigilance, self- 
control and self-sacrifice of the rank and file of 


the membership. The testimony of James D. Far- 
well is typical of many: "I went into that com- 
mittee with as earnest a sense of duty as I ever 
embarked in anything in my life. I went into it as 
a religious duty to society, although I knew I was 
going antagonistic to the law of my city and state. 
. . . We sunk individual self entirely; and our only 
object was to save the lives and property of the 

The expense was enormous; several hundred thou- 
sand dollars were collected and paid out. For the 
privilege of membership, at the constant risk of 
property and Ufe itself, Aaron Burns paid $4,000 in 
money and three months' neglect of private busi- 
ness — and Burns was one of many. 

The Committee's Work Ended. — At last came 
the day of adjournment, and the active work of 
this most extraordinary of all popular courts of 
justice came to an end in a demonstration that was 
truly imposing and grand. The military review, 
on the eighteenth of August, formed a fitting close to 
''one of the grandest moral revolutions the world has 
ever witnessed." 

Fruits of Vigilance. — The fruits of vigilance were 
not lost. Four men had been hanged, thirty ban- 
ished from California and eight hundred of the 
worst characters deemed it wise to leave the com- 
munity without ceremony. Once more the atmos- 


phere was clear. The vigilantes dropped quietly 
and loyally back into their private callings. The 
American people had again shown their abiUty to 
govern themselves under even the most trying con- 
ditions. Still it is earnestly to be hoped that never 
again will there be need in any Californian city of 
a real vigilance committee. 





Greatness of the Undertaking. — The construction 
of the Pacific Railroad has been declared by some 
to be the most stupendous work ever undertaken 
by man. The conception of such an enterprise 
was splendid in its daring; the realization was for 
the time a most brilliant performance. 

California had seemed almost entirely cut oflE 
from the East. The pioneers with much pathos 
spoke of the East as homej and for many years 
were accustomed to refer to a visit to their former 
homes as a trip to " the States," or " going back 
to America." From every standpoint — political, 
military, economic, social — it was of the highest 
importance to bind the West to the East with 
bands of steel, if California was ever to assume her 
rightful place in the Union of States. 

The Demand for Rapid Transportation. — The early 
routes of travel to the land of El Dorado are 
already well known. One might choose between 



the "Horn/' the "Isthmus" and the "Plains;" 
and whatever his choice he might be sure of meet- 
ing difficulty and danger as well as tiresome delay. 
Every overland route was marked by the bleaching 
bones of men and beasts that had succumbed to 
the fatigue, the privations or the perils of the jour- 
ney. The demand for more rapid transportation 
of the mails became very strong after the gold dis- 
covery, and this was entirely natural. The rapidly 
increasing population could no longer be satisfied 
with the tedious and roundabout route by way of 

Establishment of Private Couriers. — A first ex- 
ample of the improved service was the sending by 
San Francisco of a private courier to carry letters 
and to circulate the California Star. By 1851 a 
monthly mail was estabhshed between Sacramento 
and Salt Lake City. 

The Stagecoach. — Other overland mail lines fol- 
lowed, with routes as far south as the Giddings 
line from San Antonio, Texas, to CaUfornia. The 
stagecoach had much to do in Americanizing Cali- 
fornia; and the good old days of the stagecoach 
will ever be extolled in the story and the Uterature 
of the West. One stage driver, David Barry by 
name, is said to have had a record of half a milUon 
miles on the box of a stagecoach, in an unbroken 
career of forty-three long years. Another, Ben 


Holliday, was in 1857 awarded a ten-year contract 
to operate between the frontier states and the 
Pacific. It is reported that the income from his 
stages sometimes amounted to $1500 a day. The 


thrifty business of the California Stage Company 
and the customs of the drivers are humorously re- 
counted in the verses of a popular song of the 
gringo days: 

The drivera, when they feel inclined, 
Will have you walking on behind, 
And on your shoulders lug a pole. 
To help them through some muddy hole. 


They promise, when your fare you pay, 
"You '11 have to walk but half the way;" 
Then add, aside, with cunning laugh, 
"You 'U push and pull the other half!" 

The Pony Express. — The real forerunner of the 
raiboad as a carrier of the mails was the far-famed 
Pony Express from the Missouri River to the shores 
of the Pacific. This was established in 1859. 
From the Missouri River the trail crossed the state 
of Kansas to a point on the Platte River, which it 
followed to South Pass, thence past Fort Bridger 
in southwestern Wyoming and through Echo Canon 
and the Wasatch Mountains to Salt Lake City. 
'' West of Salt Lake City the trail skirted the 
northern shore of the Great Salt Lake, and after 
passing a low mountain divide in what is now 
northwestern Utah, reached the headwaters of the 
Humboldt River. Thence the path ran along by 
this river down to the place where it disappeared 
in a vast sandy desert known as the sink of the 
Carson. ' ' — Fairbanks. 

By means of a pass at the Ijiead of the Carson 
River, the Sierra Nevada was crossed, Placerville 
quickly reached and the journey ended at Sacra- 
mento, the capital city of California. 

The run of two thousand miles from Atchison 
to Sacramento was splendidly made, the distance 
being sometimes covered in the remarkably brief 


time of eight days. " The posts were twenty-five 
miles apart, and the steeds small, fleet, hardy 
Indian horses. The rider kept his pony on the 
full run : and when he reached a new station — 
whatever the hour of day or night -^ another mes- 
senger, ready mounted and waiting, took the little 
mail sack, struck spurs into his steed, and was off 
like the wind." — Richardson. 

It is told how one November midnight, far out 
on the plains, the little express pony, on a keen 
gallop, dashed by a stage load of emigrants. 

What's the news?" rang out the question. 

Lincoln elected! New York gives him fifty 
thousand majority!" — such was the glad shoixt 
that came back through the darkness from the ridexr 
as he dashed furiously forward. 

The record time for the Pony Express is claim^c^ 
for the delivery at Sacramento in 1861 of Presiderx^ 
Lincoln's first inaugural address in five days a.rx^ 
eighteen hours. The rates demanded were svLciYx 
as would of course now seem far too high. -^^ 
much as five dollars was charged for each l^t^t^^^ 
carried. As a business venture the Pony Exp^^^^^ 
did not pay the proprietors; but the significant f ^^ 
is that it proved conclusively that a railroad ro\it 
across the American continent was entirely f ^sl^w^j^ 

First Railroad in California. — California' ^ ^^^ 
railroad in actual operation was the ^^^rg^ment 


Valley Railroad, a short line connecting Sacra- 
mento City and Folsom, now well known as the 
site of one of our state prisons. The opening of 
this road on Washington's Birthday, 1856, was 
considered a great event and may be said to mark 
the dawn of a new industrial era for the Common- 

But if this first road within the confines of 
California, covering but the very short distance of 


twenty-two and a half miles, was important to the 
interests of the state, how much more significant 
was it when considered in its national bearings, as 
the beginning of that stupendous system of trans- 
portation which has done so much to bind West 
and East together and to strengthen and solidify 
our nation itself. 

Theodore D. Judah's Determined Efforts. — For many 
years the linking of the Pacific and the Atlantic had 
been dreamed of and talked about. Such a thing 
was seen to be most highly desirable. But friends 



of the scheme had been ridiculed and jeered at for 
their earnest arguments, by short-sighted men to 
whom the vast arid plains and wasting deserts had 
looked so forbidding. And as to building over the 
Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada; these 
people thought such an idea was a crazy notion; 
a man might as well talk about a railroad to the 
moon! It remained for the enthusiasm and courage 
of Theodore D. Judah definitely to plan and carry 
into effect the engineering ideas. 

Three Routes Surveyed. — The surveys for a 
railroad were begun by the government in 1853, 
and proceeded along three routes. One crossed 
the Rocky Mountains at South Pass, the second 
at a point to the south and the third far to the 
north, near the headwaters of the Missouri. For 
a time it looked as though this third route would 
be undertaken first, thus opening up the Oregon 
country; but on account of the great slavery 
struggle the railroad issue faded, while the marvel- 
ous immigration to California during the fifties 
took away Oregon's chance of securing the first 

Charters Granted by the Federal Government. — 
In 1862 definite provision was made by the federal 
government for the first transcontinental railway, 
by chartering the Union Pacific Company to build 
westward from Omaha and the Central Pacific 


Company to build eastward from Sacramento. 
The splendid promises of lands and bonds made to 
the capitalists by the United States government 

resulted in the beginning of building operations at 
Sacramento in 1S63 and at Omaha eighteen months 

Obstacles Overcome by the " Big Four." — The 
natural obstacles to be overcome were colossal. 
The Central Pacific was compelled to have its ma- 


chinery and supplies sent by way of Cape Horn 
or Panama, while the Union Pacific inust drag its 
ponderous materials overland from the . terminal 
points of the Iowa railways or depend upon the 
Missouri River boats. *' Both roads were being 
built through a new, uninhabited and uncultivated 
region, where there were no foundries, machine shops 
or any other conveniences of a settled country/' 
But while the Sierra Nevada presented difficul- 
ties unknown in all the history of railroad build- 
ing up to that time, they bounteously supplied the 
Central Pacific with all needed timber for ties, 
trestles and many miles of snowsheds. And while 
actual building by the Union Pacific was far easier 
over the great stretch of western prairie, there was 
almost no timber fit to be used along that line. 
The great leaders in this vast work were CoUis P. 
Huntington, Leland Stanford, Charles Crocker and 
Mark Hopkins, together known as the ''Big Four." 
Building the Railroad. — Thousands of Chinese 
laborers were imported to wield the pick and the 
shovel for the Central Pacific, and thousands of 
Irish and European immigrants worked for the 
Union Pacific. During the last few months of con- 
struction an army of about twenty-five thousand 
workmen was employed. The grading of both roads 
proceeded for a hundred miles in advance, then the 
ties, after being laid roughly in place, were adjusted. 


gauged and leveled, and finally the tracks were laid. 
This track lajdng was certainly reduced to a science ; 
it has been thus described: 

" A light car, drawn by a single horse, gallops up to the front 
with its load of rails. Two men seize the end of a rail and 
start forward, the rest of the gang taking hold by twos, until 
it is clear of the car. They come forward at a run. At the 
word of command the rail is dropped in its place, right side up 
with care, while the same process goes on at the other side of 
the car. Less than thirty seconds to a rail for each gang, and 
so four rails go down to the minute! . . . Close behind the 
first gang come the gangers, spikers and bolters, and a lively 
time they make of it. It is a grand ^ anvil chorus' that those 
sturdy sledges are playing across the plains. It is in triple 
time, three strikes to the spike. There are ten spikes to a rail, 
four hundred rails to a mile, eighteen hundred miles to San 
Francisco. Twenty-one million times are those sledges to be 
swung, twenty-one miUion times to come down with their 
sharp punctuation, before the great work of modem America 
is complete!" — Davis, "The Union Pacific Railway J' 

As the gap between East and West became less 
and less the spirit of rivalry between the two railroads 
became more and more intense. It was a battle of 
the giants. Between daylight and dark of April 29, 
1869, the Central Pacific forces, under Charles 
Crocker, laid ten miles and one hundred and eighty- 
five feet of track, estabUshing the world's record in 
railroad building. 

Driving the Last Spike. — On May 10, 1869, the 
ends of track were joined at Promontory, Nevada, 
with a memorable celebration. 


"The last spike remained to be driven. Telegraphic wires 
were so connected that each blow of the sledge could be reported 
instantly . . . ; corresponding blows were struck on the bell 
of the City Hall in San Francisco, and with the last blow of 
the sledge a cannon was fired at Fort Point. General Safford 
presented a spike of gold, silver and iron as the offering of 
the territory of Arizona; Tuttle, of Nevada, performed with a 
spike of silver a like oflSce for his state. The tie of California 
laurel was put in place, and Doctor Harkness, of California, 
presented the last spike of gold in behalf of his state. A 
silver sledge [hammer] had also been presented for the oc- 
casion. The driving of the spike by President Stanford and 
Vice-President Durant was greeted with lusty cheers; and 
the shouts of the six hundred persons present, to the accom- 
paniment of the screams of the locomotive whistles and the 
blare of the mihtary band, in the midst of the desert, found 
hearty and enthusiastic echoes in the great cities east and 

After the last spike had been driven, the Central Pacific 
train was backed up, and the Union Pacific locomotive, with its 
train, passed slowly over the point of junction and back again; 
then the Central Pacific locomotive, with its train, went through 
the same ceremony. " — Davis. 

On the instant that Mr. Miles, the chairman of 
the meeting, announced the great work done, pro- 
longed shouts rent the air and cheer after cheer arose 
" for the union of the Atlantic and Pacific, the two 
Pacific railroad companies and their officers, the 
President of the United States, the Star-Spangled 
Banner, the laborers, etc." The telegraphic des- 
patch that announced the fact to the world con- 
veyed this historic message: 


" The hia rail is laid I the last spike driven I The Pacific 
Railroad is complied! The point of junction is 10S6 milea 
west of the Missouri River, and 690 miles east of Sacramento 

Conqtletion of the Rood a Memorable Event. — The 
tenth day of May, 1869, is indeed memorable in 
the annals of California. A spirit of enthusiasm 


prevailed in all our cities and towns. The parade 
and display in San Francisc6 surpassed anything 
before witnessed. In Sacramento, when the signal 
gun announced the driving of the last spike, the 
whistles and bells of thirty assembled locomotives 
led the general chorus of all the bells and whistles 
of the city in the deafening demonstrations of joy. 
The same jubilee spirit was shown in Chicago, New 


York, Philadelphia and even as far east as Spring- 
field, Massachusetts. 

And it was no wonder. There had been boldly- 
planned and successfully completed what some have 
pronounced the " mightiest work of utility ever 
undertaken by man." Truly prophetic and full 
of meaning was the message received by the Vice- 
President: " This is the way to India.^^ 



The Great Cmtest of i860. — The year 1860 was 
memorable in California, as it was throughout the 
length and breadth of our land. In the famous 
political contest of that 
year Abraham Lincoln 
was elected president 
over three other candi- 
dates, Douglas, Breck- 
inridge and Bell, 
whereas in 1852 Frank- 
lin Pierce, the Demo- 
cratic nominee, had 
easily defeated his Whig 
opponent, and in 1856 
James Buchanan, like- 
wise a Democrat, bad 
decieively defeated 
Fillmore, of the American party and Fremont the 

Leland Stanford, "War Governor." — Even more 
emphatic for the preservation of the Union was 
the voice of the people of the "Golden State" 


in the election of September 4, 1861, when Leland 
^Stanford, Republican, was chosen governor by a 
plurality of more than twenty-three thousand over 
McConnell, a Breckinridge Democrat. To Leland 
Stanford, " War Governor " of California, is due 
much praise for the loyalty to the Union maintained 
by California during the great Civil War. 

Talk of a " Pacific Republic." — Yet by no means 
was CaUfornia free from temptations to leave the 
Union; for by open act and by secret conspiracy 
not a few men sought diligently to bring about 
secession. Before the inauguration of President 
Lincoln there was talk of estabUshing a " Pacific 
Republic." Much of this talk was occasioned by 
John C. Burch, one of California's representatives 
in Congress, who, doubtless under excitement, had 
written a letter to the San Francisco Herald before 
receiving the home election news, in which he urged 
the people — in case the emergency arose — to 
" raise aloft the flag of the ' Bear,' surrounded with 
the ' hydra ' pointed cactus of the Western wilds, 
and call upon the enlightened nations of the earth 
to acknowledge our independence, and to protect 
us, the only ' waif,' from the wreck of our once 
noble Union." 

But when a resident of Stockton named Duncan 
Beaumont hoisted a flag in January, 1861, intended 
to represent the Pacific Republic, the principal 


effect was a general hoisting of the Stars and 
Stripes throughout the city. The Union feeUng 
was strong. Beaumont brought upon himself first 
laughter, then indignation and finally ridicule. 
All the talk about the '* Pacific RepubUc " was 
of sUght consequence, and the project was soon 
given up. 

California Loyal to the Union. — With the open- 
ing of hostilities in the East, Union celebrations 
and demonstrations of loyalty in all parts of Cali- 
fornia were frequent and impressive. On May 11, 
1861, a day specially set apart for a Union celebra- 
tion, the newspaper Alta California thus expressed 
the sentiment of the state: 

"We have already quoted the language of a large majority 
of the newspapers of this state as unconditionally favorable 
to the Union. It is well known that all the Bell-Everett men, 
Republicans and Douglas Democrats and many of the members 
of the late Breckinridge party, are hearty Union men. Both 
our United States senators are sound on this great question, 
and our late Congressmen having proved unsound, are utterly 
repudiated and abandoned. In San Francisco and Sacramento, 
the commercial and political centers of the state, there is not 
a newspaper to openly justify secession. In most of the large 
towns Union meetings have been held and Union clubs formed." 

Resolutions of loyalty were adopted in the midst 
of great enthusiasm by mass meetings in many 
towns and counties. As an example, we have this 
from Santa Clara County: 


** Resolved, That as citizens of the county of Santa Clara, in 
the State of California, that we — ignoring all party relations — 
do solemnly pledge our lives, fortunes and sacred honor to the 
support of the Constitution and the laws of the United States, 
imder the administration of its legally constituted authorities; 
and we agree to hold ourselves in readiness, at all times, to 
respond to any calls of the Government for its support. " 

It might seem that California would show little 
concern for the struggles of the war so far distant 
from her borders. She was indeed happily spared 
the horrors of actual warfare at home, but her in- 
terest in the strife was intense — and intensely 
American. This is explained by the character of 
the people, including many immigrants from the 
South as well as the North and a very large number 
of adventurers. 

Some Sympathy for the South. — Yet manifestations 
of favor to the South on the part of many citizens 
were not far to seek. First, there were some who 
for a time were openly in favor of secession. We 
are told that before the end of May, 1861, " from 
the Sixth Regiment alone, which belongs to the 
Department of the Pacific, . . . fully a third of 
the officers have resigned since the inauguration of 
President Lincoln." Practically all left with the 
avowed intention of taking positions in the Con- 
federate Army. 

A larger number had a feeling of sympathy for 
the South, as was shown by many acts that could 


not be misunderstood. At length, as it became 
unsafe to avow sympathy for the Confederate 
cause, the opposition to the Union took different 
and less open forms. Chief among these was the 
organization of a number of secret societies, such 
as the " Knights of the Golden Circle." Several 
newspapers favoring the Confederacy were cir- 
culated widely, especially in the southern part of 
the state. 

But every form of disloyalty met with stern 
rebuke; several men were actually impeached for 
treasonable words, while the plots of small parties 
to aid the Confederacy were quickly exposed and 
the leaders punished. 

Union Demonstrations in San Francisco. — San Fran- 
cisco was a strong center of loyal sentiment. The 
Alta California expressed it in these words: 

"In all these United States there is not a more loyal city 
than the metropolis of the Pacific. Among our citizens, devo- 
tion to the Flag is an all-absorbing passion. It is shared equally 
by all classes, and is all but universal." (May 11, 1861.) 

On the occasion of a great Union demonstration, 
consisting of a grand procession and mass meeting, 
these well-known patriotic lines appeared in large 
letters just back of the speaker's stand: 

"The imion of lakes and the union of lands, 
The union of states none can sever; 
The union of hearts and the union of hands, 
And the flag of our Union forever." 


The " California Hundred " sent Forward. — Cali- 
fornia not only was loyal in her allegiance to the 
cause of the Union but also gave both men and 
money. The ''California Hundred" left San Fran- 
cisco on December 11, 1862, on the steamer Golden 
Age, in the midst of loud cheering and widespread 
interest. Five weeks later they were received in 
fine style at the Boston depot, where Captain Reed 
said in response to Major Lincoln's address: 

''We come not as citizens of California, neither as. citizens of 
Massachusetts. We come as citizens of the United States, and 
we are proud to enroll ourselves under the quota of Boston." 

Native-bom Voltinteers. — One company of native- 
born Calif ornians, consisting of forty volunteer cav- 
alrymen, was organized in San Jos6. The members 
of this company equipped themselves with lassos, 
being expert with the lariat. Captain Pico thus 
addressed his men: 

"Sons of California! Our country calls and we must obey! 
This unholy rebellion of the Southern States must be crushed; 
they must come back into the Union and pay obedience to the 
Stars and Stripes. United we will by force of circiunstances 
become the freest and mightiest republic on earth!'' 

Many Californians were eager to enlist as volun- 
teers. Deep was their regret because they were 
not ordered to go East. The difficulties were 
greatly increased by serious Indian uprisings in 
northern California from 1862 to 1865, These up- 


risings, together with frontier and Indian service 
at different points on the Pacific coast, prevented 
nearly all of the fifteen thousand seven hundred 
and twenty-five California Volunteers from crossing 
the Rocky Mountains. The services they rendered 
the Union were real services and were of great 
importance; yet with the exception of those en- 
listed for Massachusetts the CaUfornia forces did 
not take part in any of the great battles of the 
Civil War. 

The record shows that the state of California 
furnished to the Union two full regiments of 
cavalry, eight full regiments of infantry, one bat- 
talion of native California cavalry and one battalion 
of infantry, called mountaineers, besides several 
companies of volunteers to Massachusetts and 
Washington Territory. 

California Preserves Peace and Loyalty. — Happily 
for our Golden State peace was preserved among 
her citizens. The vigilance and patriotism of her 
governors, the loyalty of her troops and the stead- 
fastness of most of her people saved her from the 
horrors of actual warfare, thus permitting her to 
develop her own marvelous resources while pouring 
her treasures into the lap of the nation. The Con- 
current Resolution, adopted May 17, 1861, by the 
state legislature, proved to be prophetic of Cali- 
fornia's loyalty throughout the Civil War: 


*^ Resolved by the Senate, the Assembly concurring , That the 
people of California are devoted to the Constitution and Union 
of the United States, and will not fail in fidelity and fealty to 
that Constitution and Union now in the hour of trial and peril. 
That California is ready to maintain the rights and honor of 
the National Government at home and abroad, and at all times 
to respond to any requisition that may be made upon her to 
defend the republic against foreign or domestic foes.'' 

CHAPTER xxvrrr 

FirstChin »^^^.""^ CHINESE 

*« settle in 'Z!^ ^^0"»ia. _ t^, 

""« Chan, iS^'^- -fter the^ ^t Chinaman 

."merchant of tlf ^'^ intelli„_f^^ncan conquest 

^n 1847. *^" Province of n ^^^ enterprising 

^^^*«r the diseoverv . '^^^*°^' ^^o came 

^^^- the tCTT'- -^d leT^^ ^'^ ^^«' ^-« 
^^"«i«g muititud ''"^^^ss had **^^* h« ^^te 

'^' «ew Welti 7 ^^ l^i« con .'^'^'^ ^'^^"^^^e in 

founders of n,«^^ ^s^Mbe^ t^V ^^''*°'^ ^'^ »any 

''^ that the^f/""^ -4ent 7"^^"^ ^^^ **^- 
' ^«^y early dtte ^^ "^^tled on TT: '" ^^^° ^^^^ 
^« MooIb! ^^^ Clemen? . ' ^^'^^« ««a«t at 

^^re found u'*^'^*^ of m,*^* ^^^o^ia Indians 

■^original Metioa^ ^« 


features of their ceremonies, their music, their 
toys, their system of numbering and telling time 
and their sign writing, that seem to point to the 
conclusion that they were descendants of these 
Oriental races. Many wrecks of Japanese vessels 
have been stranded on the western coast of America 
within the past hundred years. Early settlers of 
Oregon are said to have found the remains of a 
Chinese junk " imbedded in the mud of the Co- 
lumbia River, several miles from the coast." If 
these things are true, might it not also be true 
that long before the records of history were kept, 
numbers of MongoUans were cast by accident and 
the winds of Providence upon our shores, to become 
the parents of the race we call Indians? 

It is said that not a dozen Chinese immigrants 
reached California during the year 1848. The 
Chinese consul reported fifty-four Chinamen and 
one Chinese woman in CaUfornia on the first of 
February, 1849. By the first of the next year 
the Chinese population had increased to about 
eight hundred, and by January, 1851, there were 
more than four thousand. Then it was that their 
rapidly increasing numbers began to attract the 
special notice of the whites. 

Why the Chinese Came. — Why came those Orien- 
tals hither? What was it that induced those people, 
noted for their dislike of change, to venture the 


long and dangerous voyage to San Francisco in the 
sailing craft of that day? 

Numbers of Chinese, like others of all nation- 
aUties, were attracted to California by the high 
wages offered and the splendid prospects of the • 
gold fields; others came to work pieces of land, 
then held so cheaply, or to seek gain from the un- 
limited resources of the new country. The great 
mass of the Chinese immigrants, however, un- 
doubtedly came to California and worked in the 
state under conditions that were but slightly differ- 
ent from that of actual slavery. The belief spread 
that they were not working as free and independent 
laborers, that they were actually receiving but Uttle 
beyond a bare living and that their work was made 
very profitable to shrewd speculators, white as well 
as yellow. 

Importation of the " Coolies." — In the " Flush 
Times " of California, when the mine, the farm 
and the business house furnished American immi- 
grants with a great wealth of opportunities, Chinese 
laborers performed a large part of the rough work; 
for every American became his own master, or 
at least stood on a plane of equality with his 
employer. While thei'e were quite a number of 
Chinese merchants in San Francisco who were both 
respectable and wealthy, the very great majority 
of their countrymen were of the class to whom 


Governor Bigler applied the word cooliesy to indi- 
cate their low rank in labor and intellect. Wash- 
ing and ironing clothes, serving as porters in 
warehouses and stores, waiting on table, selling 
vegetables and working as domestic servants — 
these fields of labor they quickly entered with 
good prospects of gaining in them a monopoly for 
their own people. 

The officers of the Pacific Railroad depended 
very largely upon the labor of Chinese coolies; 
many thousands of whom were imported especially 
for the work of constructing that first transcon- 
tinental railroad. Just how the stupendous task 
could have been done or when it could have been 
completed without the help of this army of China- 
men, it is impossible to say. 

Growing Sentiment Against the Chinese. — Never- 
theless a feeling of opposition to the Chinese was 
not slow in showing itself. The sentiment that 
prompted Americans to refer to them in 1850 
as '' our Chinese fellow citizens '^ speedily passed 
away. Within a single year the miner began to 
fear bad effects from their presence and to consider 
that he might as well leave the country if this 
invasion of the Chinese were to continue, since he 
could not pretend to compete with the poverty- 
stricken, cheap coolie labor. 

By the year 1855 the anti-Chinese cry became a 


political watchword. In the charges against them 
it was claimed that they were " a great moral and 
social evil . . . likely to work tremendous and 
lasting injury to the state;" they threatened to 
bring in '* a strange system of slavery, obnoxious 
to our institutions;" they "degraded labor and 
depreciated its value;" and, finally, they would 
never be fit to become American citizens. 

On the other hand, it was said that the Chinese 
had never sought to Uve in America any more than 
Americans had sought to live in China. It was 
held also that industries would be multiplied in Cali- 
fornia and the state enriched by the presence of 
the unskilled Chinese, thus creating a demand for 
thousands of skilled white laborers. 

Chinese Immigration Increasing. — In the mean- 
time the Chinese came in larger and larger numbers. 
The immigration for the year 1852 amounted to 
upwards of 18,000 persons. Henceforth each city 
had its crowded Chinatown, that of San Francisco 
soon coining to be the chief object of wonder to 
visitors to that wonderful city. The census of 
1880 showed a Chinese population of 75,132 in 
California out of a total of 105,465 Chinese for the 
entire United States. 

The average rate of passage from China to Cali- 
fornia was only $40. But to the masses of poor 
immigrants even this amount would have been 



prohibitive except for the fact that they were 
usually given free passage to California and back in 
return for a contract to labor at very low rates. 
Yet " measured in terms of comfort, money and 
time, California was nearer to China than to the 
Mississippi prior to 1869." Compared with the 
long, tedious caravan journey across prairie and 
over mountains, involving heavy expense and cer- 
tain hardship, the ocean voyage from Shanghai 
or Canton proved both easy and cheap. The way 
of the caravan did not bring a numerous laboring 
class from ''the States:" the highway of the Pacific 
might bring thousands of coolies. 

The Anti-Chinese Feeling. — These facts — the 
ease of reaching our ports and the increasing 
numbers who came within our borders — caused 
much anxiety ; and the anti-Chinese sentiment grew 
apace among all classes of Americans and even 
among European aliens. 

Laws against Chinese Immigration, -s- The result 
of this feeUng was shown in 1870 when the CaU- 
fomia Legislature made a law imposing a heavy 
penalty for the bringing in of any subject of China 
without first presenting evidence of his good char- 
acter ; but this law was pronounced unconstitutional 
by the Supreme Court. San Francisco passed an 
ordinance the same year against employing Chinese 
labor on any kind of pubhc work. These are types 


of many laws and ordinances that were directed 
against the Chinese, being framed to express the 
popular feeling. 

The Chinese Exclusion Act. — In 1875 Mongo- 
lians were deprived of the rights of naturaUzation. 
In the treaty of 1881 the Chinese Empire agreed 
that the United States might suspend for a time the 
coming of Chmese laborers into the United States 
whenever the interests of this nation were endangered. 
By virtue of this new treaty the Chinese Exclusion 
Act, which passed both houses of Congress after much 
debate, was approved by President Arthur on the 
sixth day of May, 1882. 

This law prohibited Chmese immigration for a 
period of ten years, but did not mterfere with the 
Chinese who were already in this country. It was 
made more stringent in 1888 : and at the close of the 
ten year period the "Geary Act" was approved, 
continuing the poUcy of exclusion — which is still 
maintained — and at the same time permitting our 
government to expel from the United States any 
Chinese persons that had been smuggled in unlaw- 
fully. The feeUng agamst the Chinese laboring 
classes has thus been perpetuated in the form of 
federal law as well as by the terms of the new State 
Constitution of 1879. 

It cannot be denied that the sentiment against 
the Chinese was to a very large extent the result of 


a purely mercenary spirit and a strong race preju- 
dice. On the other hand, it must be admitted that 
among those who set themselves against the free ad- 
mission of the Chinese were many men of foresight, 
statesmanship and patriotism. That the Chinese 
in California were shamelessly abused and insulted 
by ruffians and hoodlums is certain; that their race 
was subjected to deep humiliation is well under- 
stood. It does not necessarily follow, however, 
that they should be permitted to come to our 
shores in unlimited numbers and so thrust upon us 
a problem so grave as to suggest a national peril. 



The Legislature Recommends a New Constitution. — 
California's first constitution, the work of those 
earnest men of '49 at Monterey, endured for a 
period of thirty years. . This was a much longer time 
than many of its framers had expected it to last. 
Many of the main provisions of the laws of 1850 are 
still in force. 

Four different times had the state legislature 
recommended to the people the drafting of a new 
constitution, but each time the proposal was re- 
jected by the people of the state, and so the first 
constitution was not disturbed. 

The '' Flush Times '' had passed away and were 
never to be exactly repeated. A great many 
people of foreign birth had been coming to Cali- 
fornia; and the feeling against the throngs of im- 
migrant Chinese was growing stronger and stronger. 
The task of earning a good living was becoming 
more and more difficult as the population kept in- 
creasing. All classes of citizens suffered from the 
" hard times," brought on when the mining stocks 
began to fall so dreadfully in value about the year 



1876. These hard times — and indeed they were 
no mere dream — lasted for several years, and the 
Chinese were made to suffer much of the blame. 

The People Demand a New Constitution. — The feel- 
ing grew among the people that California needed 
a constitution "pecuUarly her own." The old con- 
stitution did not provide sufficient regulation of 
the taxing power; under it there was no provision 
for separate senate and assembly districts; and the 
legislature might borrow any amount of money it 
wished and squander it according to its own fancy. 
Many of the laboring people had a constant struggle 
to make a Uving during the hard times — there was 
actual suffering in numbers of families — and these 
people were all the more dissatisfied when they 
thought of the luxury and elegance of the dozen 
miUionaires of the state. 

" Sand-lot Oratory " Arouses Popular Feeling. — The 
spirit of discontent was very greatly increased by 
certain leaders who might be called agitators^ espe- 
cially by those " sand-lot orators " who stirred up 
the passions of the crowds at the mass meetings 
held in vacant lots near the San Francisco City 
Hall. Chief among sand-lot orators was Denis 
Kearney, an Irish drayman, who organized the 
Workingmen's Party and was on all occasions 
extremely vehement against the Chinese. Take 
him all in all, Kearney was one of the strangest 


characters in the whole history of California; and 
" Kearneyism" will always stand for a low and noisy 
kind of politics. 

On September 5, 1877, the people voted for a 
convention to revise and change the California 


constitution. Many who really knew nothing about 
the faults of the old constitution or the need of a 
new one imagined that the times would somehow 
be made better and that they would be benefited 
by this movement; so they were in favor of holding 
the convention. 

Election of Delegates. — The election for delegates 
was held on the nineteenth of June, 1878. There 


was to be one delegate from each state senatorial 
district, one from each assembly district and eight 
from each of the congressional districts, making a 
total of one hundred and fifty-two. 

The workingmen carried the day in San Fran- 
cisco, electing fifty delegates; the non-partisans of 
the state elected eighty-five, a majority of the whole 
number; there were nine regular Republicans and 
eight Democrats among those chosen to frame the 
new constitution. 

The Meetings of, the Convention. — The meetings 
of the convention were held in the Assembly 
Chamber of the state capitol, at Sacramento, 
beginning Saturday, September 28, 1878. The 
president was Joseph P. Hoge, who had at an 
earlier time represented Illinois in Congress and 
who later was a superior judge in San Francisco. 
Other officers included Joseph A. Johnson and 
Edwin F. Smith, secretaries; E. L. Crawford and 
George E. McStay, clerks; and T. J. Sherwood, 

It was about ten days before the actual work 
was begun. The convention was in session one 
hundred and fifty-six working days in all, and 
finally adjourned, after completing its labors, on 
the third of March, 1879. 

It is not necessary to dwell upon the long de- 
bates of the convention. It was a body of men of 


a good if not an exceptionally high degree of intel- 
ligence; although it seems certain, if comparison 
'were to be made, that the men of '49 could not be 
excelled in real patriotism and true devotion to the 
highest interests of California. ' 

The New Constitution is Framed. — The spirit of 
democracy of the new constitution is shown in 
the Bill of Rights by such declarations as these: 
'^ All men are by nature free and independent, and 
have certain inaUenable rights; " '' All political 
power is inherent in the people; '^ " No property 
qualification shall ever be required for any person 
to vote or hold office." 

The most remarkable part of the new consti- 
tution — and to many the most objectionable — 
is that dealing with the Chinese. It declares that 
no native of China " shall ever exercise the privi- 
leges of an elector in this state." Furthermore it 
states that "Asiatic coolieism is a form of human 
slavery, and is forever prohibited in this state, and 
all contracts for coolie labor shall be void." " No 
Chinese shall be employed on any state, county, 
municipal or other public work, except in punish- 
ment for crime." 

The Constitution is Adopted. — The new constitu- 
tion went into effect on the Fourth of July, 1879, 
and in all respects became the law of the land 
six months later, January 1, 1880. The document 


itself is more than three times as long as the con- 
stitution of 1849, and many persons complained 
that it was more like an entire code of laws than a 
constitution. Delegates said in answer to this 
crijiicism that many provisions not usually found 


in a constitution were put in purposely, so that 
the state legislature could not freely change them 
whenever it might see fit. 

On the whole the constitution of 1879 left a 
sense of disappointment in many thoughtful minds. 
It did not seem to reach the goal desired by the 
best citizens, and it was not perfectly worked out 


into the unity of a perfect system. Since its adop- 
tion it has been amended a great many times, and 
even at present falls short of the ideal in many 
ways. There are men who believe that there is 
now more reason for wishing a new constitution 
again than there was in 1879. In spite of any 
faults the constitution may have, however, Califor- 
nia has continued to prosper in a marvelous manner, 
and there can be no doubt that her progress is of 
the most enduring kind. 



The Westward Movement. — The stirring, pictur- 
esque scenes of our pioneer * days can never be 
repeated. There are no more Californias to con- 
quer. Our name and our story are unique. 

An early decree of " Manifest Destiny " was that 
the great West should sometime become an in- 
tegral part of the empire of the United States. It 
is true the early explorations and settlements of 
the vast domain beyond the Appalachians belonged 
chiefly to the French and the Spaniards, and their 
titles to the land were undisputed for many gen- 
erations: it is true, the western coasts were three 
thousand miles from the original United States on 
the Atlantic seaboard. But with the beginning of 
American history there began also a mighty ex- 
pansion of the Anglo-Saxon race to the westward, 
which, from ascending the James, the Potomac and 
the Hudson in the vain hope of reaching the great 
Pacific, was destined to continue with fortunate 
persistency until the farthermost Occident should 
be reached and the Occident firmly joined to the 



The victory of General Wolfe on the Plains of 
Abraham, in 1759, was a door that opened to the 
Anglo-Saxon a North and a West indefinitely great. 
In the words of the historian Green: "With the 
triumph of Wolfe on the Heights of Abraham began 
the history of the United States." 

As if France had not yet suffered sufficient loss 
and humiliation on the American continent, Napo- 
leon Bonaparte " lightly offered the province which 
had come to him so cheaply," and the great stretches 
of the Louisiana territory were, in 1803, ceded to 
the United States. 

The Lewis and Clark Expedition. — The famous 
expedition of Lewis and Clark was the beginning of 
an intense American interest in the .great Oregon 
territory, and our early hold upon it was greatly 
strengthened by the diplomacy of John Quincy 
Adams. It is said that Daniel Webster once used 
these words concerning Oregon: " What do we want 
with this vast worthless area, this region of savages 
and wild beasts, of deserts, of shifting sands and 
whirlwinds of dust, of cactus and prairie dogs?" 
Such was for a time the popular idea of the wonder- 
ful Northwest country. 

The United States had completed one great 
epoch of territorial growth in the acquisition of the 
Louisiana territory but it was yet far from being 
a perfected national state. A glance at the map 


shows that perfect geographical unity had by no 
means been reached, Oregon was so very remote 
from Washington, the national capital, as to make 
it seem to many scarcely worth a dispute. Texas 
and the vast territory of Spanish California must 
also be acquired if the national boundaries were 
to be rounded out. " Manifest Destiny " seems to 

have decreed that CaUfornia should eventually be- 
long to the United States, notwithstanding the fact 
of Spanish — or Mexican — possession and the claims 
or desires of England, France, and Russia. 

California and the Slavery Question. — As has al- 
ready been shown, the question of slavery exten- 
sion had an important relation to the accession of 
California; and strangely enough it is to California 


that slavery extension owes its downfall. Andrew 
Jackson's policy of forcible annexation of territory 
led to the annexation of Texas under Tyler. Under 
Polk the war with Mexico gave to the United States 
much more western territory. 

One act in the drama of the Mexican War, as we 
have seen, was the acquisition of California, which 
was seized with small re- 
gard for the rights of the 
population. Why should 
not slavery be success- 
fully introduced into this 
new and inviting field ? 
" Manifest Destiny " an- 
swered the question, and 
in answering it forever 
turned the tide against 
human slavery. It was 
observed that neither the 
climate, nor the soil, nor 
the productions of the larger portion of California 
were adapted to slave labor. Besides this, slavery 
had been forbidden in Mexico, the mother country of 
California, since 1829. The struggle on this question, 
both in California and at Washington, was long and 
bitter, but at the last " Manifest Destiny " had its 
way. It is reported that Senator Calhoun, when 


almost in a dying condition, invited Senator Gwin 
to an interview, in the course of which he solemnly 
predicted, as an effect of California's admission as a 
free state, the destruction of the equilibrium between 
North and South followed by " a more intense agi- 
tation of the slavery question, a civil war and the 
destruction of the South." 

Gold Discovery and the Anglo-Saxons. — But not 
yet had " Manifest Destiny " fully expr^^sed itself. 
Although gold had been found in the Los Angeles 
region as eariy as 1841, a favoring Providence con- 
cealed the unUmited stores of wealth until after 
the American conquest and after hope of legalized 
slavery extension had faded. James Marshall dis- 
covered gold in 1848, not for a Latin race but for 
the sturdy Anglo-Saxon ; not for a divided and slave- 
ridden people but for free and united America. A 
story,' interesting in this connection, is told of an 
aged man of the Spanish race, Don Luis Peralta by 
name. When he found that his sons, some of them 
nearly sixty years old, were filled with the gold ex- 
citement of the days of '49, he called them about 
him and said: " My sons, God gave that gold to 
the Americans. If he had wanted the Spaniards 
to have had it, he would have let them discover 
it before now. So you had better not go after 
it, but let the Americans go. You can go to 
your ranch and raise grain, and that will be your 


beat gold field; because we all must eat while we 

California Gold and the Civil War. — In the dark  
hours of civil strife it was California gold that sup- 
plied a necessary element of strength and steadiness 

to our national finance. M. Alexander Biiehner, 
writing in 1869, declared: " It is the gold of CaU- 
fornia that has dealt the fatal blow to the institu-^ 
tion of slavery in the United States." 

Early Prophecies. — The " Manifest Destiny " of 
California, so far as it relates to past days, is not 
■merely a trumped-up expression of to-day for re- 


trospective or ex post facto use. Let us note a 
few of the numerous prophetic utterances of the 
pioneer press, far-seeing argonauts and observant 
travelers. In the Californian of August 29, 1846, 
a writer signing himself " C " uses this language: 

Vista of an American State.— "The destiny of California is 
fixed — she is to become a free and independent state — a 
member of the North American Confederacy. She is no longer 
to be subject to a foreign arbitrary power, to domestic revolu- 
tions or military rule. She is to make her own laws/ manage 
her own resources, and found those institutions in which her 
children are to find a happy home. 

"... Golden harvests will wave over hills and valleys, where 
now only the briar and bramble are seen; and where only the 
howl of the wolf is heard, the gloomy silence of the wild cascade 
will be broken by the thunder of factories, where art and indus- 
try will roll out upon the public their richest products. Com- 
merce will enliven every bay, and penetrate into the gorges of 
the distant mountains. 

" This may seem too flattering a picture, but it is no more than 
what is seen and felt through the length and breadth of the 
United States. The same enterprise and prosperity which pre- 
vails there avails this country. The same spirit which has 
made the farmer and mechanic wealthy there, will make them 
wealthy here. The same spirit that has carried the advantages 
of an education to every child ihere, will carry the advantages 
to every child here. The same spirit that has founded asylums 
there for the infirm, the deaf and dumb, the houseless widow 
and orphan, will foimd the same beneficent institutions here. 
Such is the destiny of California, such the patrimony which the 
aged, now descending into their graves, bequeath to their 
children. Who would dread such a vista? Who bar his off- 
spring from such a heritage?" 


The English Language. — The same paper fore- 
saw at a very early date that English was to be 
the language of California. On October 10, 1846, 
when the English-speaking population of the en- 
tire territory was less than 2000, or not quite 
one-fifth of the total (exclusive of Indians), it said 
editorially : 

"This [English] is to be the language of California. The 
vast tide of emigration from the United States will inevitably 
make it so. It becomes, therefore, every parent to have his 
children taught this language, and have it taught them early. 
... No parent should let his child grow up in ignorance; it 
is a reflection on him, and an inevitable misfortune to the child." 

San Francisco. — The surpassing excellence of the 
San Francisco harbor, even while San Francisco 
was hardly a village, did not escape notice. The 
editor of the Calif ornian writes, September 26, 1846: 

"San Francisco will yet become the most important port in 
California. It has in itself advantages which no other port 
can rival. The navies of the whole world can float securely 
in its sheltered waters; and then the valleys which stretch away 
from its strand are clothed with perpetual verdiu-e, and the 
streams which roll into it are never dry. " 

But even the prophetic editor could not foresee 
that within three short years that selfsame har- 
bor would be transformed into a forest of masts 
by the influx of argonauts. At a somewhat later 
date, to be sure, he does get a truer view of Cali- 


fornia's prospective greatness and of the certain 
importance of the town of San Francisco: 

"Who can now doubt the importance to which California 
is destined? And who can doubt the important station the 
town of San Francisco is destined to occupy among the cities 
of the Pacific borders? We have already witnessed its rise 
from a few houses to a great many. It now contains eight 
stores of general merchandise, the most of which do a very- 
considerable wholesale and retail business." 

After the great tide of immigration had fairly- 
set in even bolder prophecies were made — and 
with good reason. In the Constitutional Con- 
vention of 1849 Mr. R. M. Price, a delegate, used 
these words: 

"Our commercial capital, San Francisco, is, in my opinion, 
destined to be the center of the exchange of the world, and is 
destined to supply the world with a large share of its currieijcy. 
With our great natural wealth we can never want currency." 

Population. — At the opening of the nineteenth 
century the population of California, exclusive of 
Indians, was perhaps 1300. The number of 
whites increased very slowly until the emigrants 
from the United States began to enter the country. 
In August of 1846 the population numbered, if 
we exclude Indians, about 10,000, of whom fewer 
than 2000 were foreigners. At the beginning of 
1849 the number had reached 26,000, partly 
native Californians and the remainder Americans 
and foreigners. The immigration of Americans 


during 1849 was estimated at 80,000 and of for- 
eigners at 20,000. When the year 1850 opened, the 
population amounted in round numbers to 115,000.* 
San Francisco grew from 812 in March, 1848, to 
over 5000 in July of 1849. 

The Constitutional Convention which met at 
Monterey in September, 1849, set for itself the 


task of framing a state government; and on Septem- 
ber 9 of the next year there was born, amidst the 
most intense struggles in the arena of our national 
government, the Empire State of the Pacific — 
California the Golden. 

All-devouring " Manifest Destiny" is having her 
way, but is not yet satisfied. California " has be- 

* It is well understood that the census report for Califoniia for 
1850 is incomplete &nd inaccurate. 


come a free and independent state," of the Amer- 
ican Union; she is no longer " subject to a foreign 
arbitrary power, to domestic revolutions or mili- 
tary rule." She makes her own laws, manages 
her own resources and founds those institutions 
in which her children find a happy home. Instead 
of the brier and bramble there are golden harvests 
waving over hills and valleys. Instead of the 
thousands of antelope, elk and deer, there are 
countless sheep, cattle and horses. Where a brief 
half-century ago there were a few scattered villages 
of degraded Indians, numerous flourishing cities 
and towns now support their teeming, enlightened 
population. . 

A Modem Rip Van Winkle. — Let one of our 
hoary-headed pioneers who has lived long enough 
to witness the entire American development of 
California lose himself — as he is prone to do — 
in daydreams of our heroic age. Let him visit, 
in recollection, the quaint Mission of the padres, 
participate once again in the spirited fandangOy 
meet and terrify the wild Indian who had never 
looked upon the face of a white man. Let him come 
upon the haunts of the great grizzly, behold the 
vast herds of elk, listen to the howling of the wolf 
and the coyote; let him fondly think of home and 
loved ones thousands of miles away, until lone- 
some and wistful he is wrapt in reverie. Then let 


him, Rip Van Winkle that he is, suddenly awake 
and look out upon the splendid modern common- 
wealth of California. Truly marvelous is the trans- 
formation he will witness. 

Growth in Population. — Note first the population. 
The American population of 2000 in the year of 
the gold discovery has passed the 2,000,000 mark, 
the census reports showing these gigantic strides: 
1850, 92,597; 1860, 379,994; 1870, 560,247; 1880, 
864,694; 1890, 1,208,130; 1900, 1,485,053; 1910, 
2,377,549. San Francisco, from being a pueblo of 135 
dwellings and 12 places of business in 1848, has perse- 
vered through much tribulation. True to the phoenix 
myth, she has risen from the ashes of her greatest 
calamity, and is destined to be one of America's 
mightiest cities, if not " the center of the exchange 
of the world." Los Angeles, a village of 1600 
inhabitants when California became a state, has 
become a metropolitan center of 320,000, setting a 
new mark to the world in city building. 

Material Resources. — California's material re- 
sources are ample, beyond easy comprehension. 
Note the magnitude of her mining industry. In 
less than half a century upwards of $1,250,000,000 
in gold was produced, the production for the single 
year of 1852 amounting to $81,294,700. Gold 
mining continues apace. Besides gold the mineral 
product of California is very large and is in various 


forms, such as quick^ver, coal, iron, ulver, copper, 
tin, zinc, borax and natural gas; as well as structural 
materials, such as cement, clay, macadam, marble, 
sandstone and onyx. Some idea of the value of pe- 
troleum and allied products may be gained from the 
fact that the production of petroleum in 1910 is 

estimated at 73,000,000 barrels as against 4,000,000 
in 1900 and 403,000 barrels in 1890. In addition to 
supplying her own markets CaUfornia is supplying 
the whole western coast of America from Chile to 
Alaska with crude oil, is sending it across the Pacific 
to Japan and will soon be openly competing for the 
market of the Eastern States, of Europe and of 


Much of the true gold of California lies in her 
spreading grain fields. For years it was believed 
by many that mining was the only industry that 
would pay; but the present acreage of wheat, 
barley, oats and com, running into the millions, 
with annual yields worth scores of millions of 


dollars, shows how utterly baseless was such a 
belief. The grain products for a single year (1908) 
including wheat, barley, oats and other grains 
amounted in value to nearly $55,000,000; while 
the total value of California's farm products for 
that year is estimated at $225,000,000 or 450 times 
that of 1850. 

Add to this the golden products of the dairies, 
amounting in one year to more than $25,000,000, the 


thousands of carloads of fruit of all kinds shipped 
out of the state every year, amounting in 1909 to 
more than 1,200,000 tons, the $87,000,000 worth 
of forest products in a single year and the enor- 
mous riches of vine and valley, of stream and bay 
— and the material side of California's resources 
must be indeed impressive. The annual soil pro- 
duction mounts to the grand total of nearly half 
a bilUon of dollars. 

Development of Commerce. — The commercial im- 
portance of California is likewise established. But 
for the primitive canoe and an occasional brig the 
splendid harbor of San Francisco was entirely un- 
used until the gold discovery transformed it into 
a forest of masts. The completion of. the Pacific 
Railroad in 1869 was an event of highest /im- 
portance. The entrance of great competing rail- 
roads augurs well for future commerce; while the 
completion of the Panama Canal will be epoch- 
making for the entire Pacific coast. Greater Los 
Angeles is actively preparing for the commercial 
leadership of the great Southwest. The absorption 
of Wilmington and San Pedro in 1909 gave her 
the improved harbor of San Pedro and placed 
her on the highway of maritime greatness. Our 
trade with new China and the Orient will rapidly 
assume proportions that hitherto have appeared 
quite incredible. To-day we are witnessing the 


first fruits of Seward's prophetic sentiment, for 
before our eyes the mighty Pacific is becoming 
" the chief theater of the events of the world's 
great hereafter," and om- western borders the 
" right hand of the continent." 


Education. — Warm interest was taken in the 
subject of education by the convention of 1849, 
which showed excellent foresight in setting apart 
certain revenues for a state university and a com- 
plete system of public schools. The University 
of California, established in 1868, is at present 
ranked as one of the greatest in America, as is 
also the Leland Stanford Junior University at 


Palo Alto, while other colleges and universities 
of high rank are not wanting; Every considerable 
town and village has its high school or academy; 
excellent professional, normal and technical schools 
ahound; graded schools are everywhere. In no 

other state is the educational standard higher than 
in California. 

It is well known that California has long been 
synonymous with largeness. Her own dimensions; 
her mountains; her bays, rivers and lakes; her 
grain fields, orchards and gardens; her trees; her 
marvelous works of nature — these enjoy every- 
where a reputation for largeness. But are these 
works of nature and these ample material resources 


of man the true measure of California's greatness? 
Is such foundation sufficient to the demands of 
the future to which destiny beckons the Golden 

High Destiny of the Golden State. — "Manifest 
Destiny" has uttered many a decree not yet fuUy 


carried out. California's population will continue 
to increase; the arid wastes of the 0-eat West will 
be reclaimed and transformed into populous and, 
fertile districts; industries now in their infancy 
will expand to unexpected proportions and material 
wealth of every kind -will multiply. From a posi- 
tion of complete separation from the -world onlv 
a few decades ago, California wiU be tlirust into 


the very center of the geography of world move- 
ments. California's vantage, her coast line of 700 
miles and her. unequaled harbors, destine her to 
be " Queen of the Pacific/' 

But will she fulfill her high destiny? Will she 
steadfastly obey the higher law of her nature and 
mount to the summit of her opportunities? 

Our hoary-headed pioneer, ripened by his years 
and his wealth of experience, raises his hand and 
his voice of warning as he utters words of wisdom 
and lays upon us his parting injunction. 

What constitutes a state? Our mines and fields 
and factories ; the growth of population, the magni- 
tude of commerce; our systems of law, our institu- 
tions of learning — these singly or combined, material 
agents as they are, can never inaugurate the per- 
fection of progress, except as they produce "men, 
high-minded men," men 

" Who live above the fog 
In public duty and in private thinking/' 

" Manifest Destiny " is calling to-day for native 
sons and native daughters of true moral fiber and 
excellent virtues. Heaven itself lays upon us the 
injunction, "Quit you like men. Be strong!" 



Giving the dates at which they were founded. 

San Diego, in San Diego County, July 16, 1769. 

San Luis Rey, San Diego County, June 13, 1798. 

San Juan Capistrano, Orange County, November 1, 1776. 

San Gabriel Arcangel, Los Angeles County, September 8, 1771. 

San Buenaventura, Ventura County, March 31, 1782. 

San Fernando, Los Angeles County, September 8, 1797. 

Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara County, December 4, 1786. 

Santa Ynez, Santa Barbara County, September 17, 1804. 

La Purisima Concepcidn, Santa Barbara County, December 8, 1787. 

San Luis Obispo, San Luis Obispo County, September 1, 1772. 

San Miguel Arcangel, San Luis Obispo County, July 25, 1797. 

San Antonio de Padua, Monterey County, July 14, 1771. 

La Soledad, Monterey County, October 9, 1791. 

San Carlos de Monterey (or Carmel Mission), Monterey County, 

June 3, 1770. 
San Juan Bautista, San Benito County, June 24, 1797. 
Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz County, August 28, 1791. 
Santa Clara, Santa Clara County, January 18, 1777. 
San Jos^, Alameda County, June 11, 1797. 
Dolores, or San Francisco de Asis, San Francisco County, October 

9, 1776. 
San Rafael Arcangel, Marin County, December 18, 1817. 
San Francisco Solano, Sonoma County, August 25, 1823. 


San Jos^ del Cabo. 
Santiago de los Coras. 
Todos Santos. 

Nuestra Senora de los Dolores del Sur. 



San Aloymo. 

San Francisco Xavier de Vlgge Biaundo. 

Nuestra Senora de Loreto. 

San Jos^ de Comondu. 

La Purisima Concepci6n. 

Santa Rosalie de Mul^e. 

Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe. 

San Ignacio. 

Santa Gertrudis. 

San Francisco de Borja. 

Nuestra Senora de Columna. 


Spanish Goviemcn 

Gaspar de PortolA, 176^71. 
Felipe de Barn, 1771-74. 
Felipe de Neve, 1774r-82. 
Pedro Fages, 1782-90. 
Joa6 Romeu, 1790-92. 
Jos6 Arrillaga, 1792-94. 
Diego de Borica, 1794-1800. 
Jos^ Arrillaga, 1800-14. 
Jos^ Arguello, 1814-15. 
Pablo de Sola, 1815-22. 

Mexican Govcmofs 

Luis Arguello, 1823-25. 

Jos^ Maria Echeandia, 1825-31. 

Manuel Victoria, 1831-32. 

Pio Pico, 1832-33. 

Jo86 Figueroa, 183^-35. 

Jos6 Castro, 1835-36. 

Nicolas Gutierrez, 1836 (January to May). 

Mariano Chico, 1836 (few months). 

Nicolas Gutierrez, 1836 (few months). 

Juan B. Alvarado, 1836-42. 

Manuel Micheltorena, 1842-45. 

Pio Pico, 1846 (February 22 to August 10). 


Amedcan Govemofs tinder Military Rule 


John D. Sloat, July 7, 1846. 

Robert F. Stockton, July 29, 1846. 

John C. Fremont, January 19, 1847 (for 50 days). 

Stephen W. Keamy, March to May 31, 1847. 

Richard B. Mason, May 31, 1847. 

Persifor F. Smith, February 28, 1849. 

Bennet Riley, April 12, 1849. 

Governors of tlie State of GdHomia 

Peter H. Burnett, December 20, 1849 (Democrat). 
John McDougall, January 9, 1851 (Democrat). 
John Bigler, January 8, 1852 (Democrat). 
John Bigler, January 7, 1854 (Democrat). 
John Neely Johnson, January 9, 1856 (American Party). 
John B. Weller, January 8, 1858 (Democrat). 
Milton S. Latham, January 9, 1860 (Democrat). 
John G. Downey, January 14, 1860 (Democrat). 
Leland Stanford, January 10, 1862 (Republican). 
Frederick F. Low, December 10, 1863 (Union Party). 
Henry H. Haight, December 5, 1867 (Democrat). 
Newton Booth, December 8, 1871 (Republican). 
Romualdo Pacheco, February 27, 1875 (Republican). 
William Irwin, December 9, 1875 (Democrat). 
George C. Perkins, January 8, 1880 (Republican). 
George Stoneman, January 10, 1883 (Democrat). 
Washington Bartlett, January 8, 1887 (Democrat). 
Robert W. Waterman, September 13, 1887 (Republican). 
H. H. Markham, January 8, 1891 (Republican). 
James H. Budd, January XI, 1895 (Democrat). 
Henry T. Gage, January 4, 1899 (Republican). 
George C. Pardee, January 7, 1903 (Republican). 
James N. Gillett, January 9, 1907 (Republican). 
Hiram Johnson, January 3, 1911 (RepubUcan). 




1850 92,597 

1860 379,994 

1870 560,247 

1880 864,694 

1890 1,208,130 

1900 1,485,063 

1910 2,377,549 


With county seats, area in square miles, 
and population according to 1910 census. 



Alameda Oakland 840 246,131 

Alpine Markleeville 675 309 

Amador Jackson 568 9,086 

Butte Oroville 1,764 27,301 

Calaveras San Andreas 990 9,171 

Colusa Colusa 1,080 7,732 

Contra Costa Martinez 750 31,674 

Del Norte Crescent City 1,546 2,417 

El Dorado Placerville 1,891 7,492 

Fresno Fresno 5,606 75,667 

Glenn Willow 1,460 7,172 

Humboldt Eureka 3,507 33,857 

Imperial El Centro 4,140 13,591 

Inyo Independence 10,224 6,974 

Kern Bakersfield 8,159 37,715 

Kings Hanford 1,260 16,230 

Lake Lakeport 1,332 5,526 

Lassen Susanville 4,750 4,802 

Los Angeles Los Angeles 3,957 504,131 

Madera Madera 2,140 8,368 

Marin San Rafael 516 25,114 

Mariposa Mariposa 1,580 3,956 




Mendocino XJkiah 3,400 23,929 

Merced Merced 1,760 15,148 

Modoc Alturas 4,097 6.191 

Mono Bridgeport 2,796 2,042 

Monterey SaJinas 3,460 24,146 

Napa Napa 800 19.800 

Nevada Nevada City 968 14,955 

Orange Santa Ana 780 34,436 

Placer Auburn. . . j 1,484 18,237 

Plumas Quincy 2,361 6,259 

Riverside Riverside 7,008 34,696 

Sacramento Sacramento 1,007 67,806 

San Benito Hollister 1,476 8.041 

San Bernardino San Bernardino 20,056 66,706 

San Diego San Diego 4,377 61,666 

San Francisco San Francisco 42 416,912 

San Joaquin Stockton 1,370 50,731 

San Luis Obispo San Luis Obispo 3,600 19,383 

San Mateo Redwood City 470 26,686 

Santa Barbara Santa Barbara 2,460 27,738 

Santa Clara San Jos6 1,365 83,639 

Santa Cruz Santa Cruz 426 26,140 

Shasta Redding 4,060 18,920 

Sierra DownieviUe 910 4,098 

Siskiyou Yreka 6,078 18,801 

Solano Fairfield 911 27,559 

Sonoma Santa Rosa 1,540 ^'^^ 

Stanislaus Modesto 1,486 22,522 

Sutter Yuba City 611 ^,328 

Tehama Red Bluff 3,200 IV^^ 

Trinity Weaverville 3,276 »»301 

Tulare VisaJia 4,863 35,M0 

Tuolumne Sonora 2,282 «»^^ 

Ventura. San Buenaventura . . . 1,850 i 

Yolo Woodland... 1,017 l^j,^^^ 

Yuba MarysviUe.... 625 i^.^ 


Key, — In pronouncing Spanish words and proper names it will 
be of great assistance to note carefully the sounds of the vowels, 
as follows: a as in JaJlher; 6 as in eight; i as in machine; o as in old; 
ti as in rule. 

Markings are used as follows: 

a as in late; A as in hSA; d as in fdiher; a as in what; e as in he; 
1^ as in met; e as in veil; t as in tee; S as in bin; i as in police; o as 
in so; 5 as in not; |4 as in rule; ^ as in my; qh asin maqhine. 


ftd-ml-nls-trii-dO'res, adminis- 

X-ddnbe, sun-dried brick 

X-lM-me'dil, a public walk or 
shaded promenade 



Sl-ciU'de, mayor, magistrate 

U'til, high, upper 



Am'il-z6n (Spanish d-md-zon'), 
a mythical female warrior 



A-pll'che, an Indian tribe 

Sr'gd-naut, a gold seeker 

Arguello {dr-gwaVyo), D6n L^ls 

Ar'y-&n, parent stock of Latin 
and Anglo-Saxon races 

tt-t6le, roasted barley meal 

au'ri sll'cra fll'm^s, thirst for gold 

Az't^cs, ancient inhabitants of 


Bahama Q)Qrah'm&) 
baja (h&'h&)y lower 
BlU-b6% Vlis'c5NuSez {no(m'y&) 

Bautista (boughrteea'tO) 
B«'ring, Vi'ti&s 
Borja (bor'ha) 

Buen (bimn) tl-em'p5, the good 

caballero (cdrbdl^d'rd)^ knightly 

Cttl>d Bajd {bd'ho) 
Clll>d del Engano (en-gdn^yd) 
Ci-brl'lld, Rodriguez (ra-dre'ffee) 
Calafia (cdrle-fl'd) 

cft-rre't2l, Mexican cart 







Cheyenne (aAt-eh') 




cd-mttn-dlin'te, commander 


Car'dd-ba, Al-bgr'td 


cd-yd'te, prairie wolf 


Cuba (ku'ha; Spanish koo'ha) 



De Mofras {md'frd) 
De Sma 
Di-6s', God 

Dd-minl-can, follower of St. 
Dominic; monastic order 


ex post fac'to, after the deed is 

fitn-dMn'gd, a general dance and 

Fe-rreao, BMr-td-ld-me' 
fir-es' til, feast-day, holiday 
frijoles (fre-ho'les), beans 

Gain Wye), Francisco (frdn- 

Galvez (gal'veih), Jose' (hd-ady^ 
Gft'mft, Vlis'cd dft 


gente de razon {hanrtd da rdson') 

men of reason, civilized 
gentiles (hdnrte'lds) 
Gillespie (gilrUs'pi) 
Grijalva (jgre-hOl'vd) 
grin'gd, one of EngUsh blood or 


Hawaii (hd-tn%) 
Hi-diQ'gd, Guil-d«-lu'pe 


juzgado {hoozrgd'do), tribunal, 
court house 

Keamy {kdr'ny) 




Lft Perouse (pe-rcms') 
Lft Pu-ii'^-mir 
Laramie (lar'arme) 

L6-v&nt', region about the east- 
em Mediterranean 
Lds Angeles {dng^hdlraia) 


MMl-do-ntt'dd, Pe'drd lYunez 

mM-tMn'zH, annual or semi-an- 
nual slaughter of cattle 

m&-y6r'dd'mO, a chief steward. 



MK-z}f-£rft, Juan- (ho<han') de 

Mendocino {m&nrdd4hB'nd) 


me-t2l'te, stone used in grinding 

Mdn-tiU'yd, Ordonez (dr-don'yes) 


Montezuma {monr-td-zoo'ma) 
mu'chas gracias (ffrorthVas), 

many thanks 



neoph3rte {nd'o-fite), baptized 

Ne've, Fe-U'pe de 
New Al'bWn 

IXewfovaidlBiid (new'fund4and) 
New Helvetia ( HU^eshi'a) 
Nu-es'tril Senora (sen-yd'rd) 
NueVIl, new 

pil'dres, fathers 

Pflldu, Francisco (frdn-thWco) 



PS-ye'rtts, Mtt-rl-ft'nd 

Perez {pd'rds), Juan {ho(y-an') 


Philippine {fUlp-pin) 


PI'cd, PI'6 

pl-ndle, com meal 

plaza (p^'sd), public square 

pd-bltt-do'res, settlers, colonists 

Point PI'nds (also called Ctt'bd 

de PI'nds) 
Point Reyes {re'yes) 

Pdr-td-Ul', GXa'pir de 
pre-id'dl-d, fortified garrison 
Prd-vln'cl-ite In-ter'ntts, Internal 

pueblo (pwah'lb), town 
Puget ipu'jU) Sound 


rftn-che-rl% village of Indians 
rin-che'r6s, ranchers, farmers 
riln'chds, ranches, farms 
re-b6'Bd, scarf worn by Spanish 


RI-V£'rtt y (e) Mdn-cU'dl 
rd-de'd, round-up of cattle for 

branding and separating 
Ruelle {rvr^n, B&p-titste' 


sll'gils, Scandinavian myths 


sJU've, a salute 

Sttn X-ldy'sI-d 

Sttn in-td'ni-d 

Sttn Buenaventura (&u7a-nd-ve7i- 

Sfln Cttrlds 
SSn Dl-e'gd 
Sfln Fer-nftn'dd 
Sfln Frttn-cls'cd 
Sttn Gtt-brl-el' 
Sttn Joaquin (hochkeen') 
Sttn Jos6 (hd-sdy*) 
San Jos^ del Cft'bd 
Sfln Juan (hoo-dn') Bautista 

san Juan Cap-is-tril'nd 
san Lu'Is 0-bis'pd 



Sttn Luis Rey (re) 

San Mtt-te'd 

Sftn Miguel (me-gale') 

san Pfts-quai' 

Siln Pe'dr5 

Sfln Ra-fl-el' 

Sftn'tfl Bttr'bil-ril 

san'ta ca-ta-u'iiii 
san'ta cu'ra 

Sftn'ta Cruz {kroos) 

Sftn'ta ElOft 

San'ta Fe' 

San'ta Gertrudis {her-troo'-dees) 

San'ta Inez (e'ndse) 

Sttn'tfl Ma-rl'il 

San'ta Ro-sH-U-a de Mulege 

San'tit-ft'gd de Uls C6'rils 
Siin'td Do-mZn'gd 
S2in't5 Td-mfts' 
sa-ra'pe, cloak worn by Spanish 

Ser'ra, Junipero (hoo-ne-pd'rd) 

Senor (sen-yor'), sir, Mister. 
Senora {senryd'rd). Madam 
Senorita (8enryd^td)y Miss 
se-quoi% gigantic tree of pine 


Si-e'rra Ne-vit'da 
sl-es'ta, an after-dinner nap 
sd-brSn'te, surplus, residue 
sdm-bre'ro, hat with broad brim 
Sutter {soo'ter) 


t£-mes-cai'y sweat house or as- 
sembly hall, used by Indians 

The's6->iis, mythical character of 

ancient Greece 
Td'dds Sftn'tds 
tortilla (tor-ted^yd), coarse cake 

of com meal 
tttles, species of bulrush, com- 

mon in CaUfomia 

Ugarte (oo-gdr'td) 

Ulloa (oo4d'&) Francisco (frdn- 

^U^co) de 
Ur-dl-ne'ttt, Xn-dres' d£ 

VaUejo (vdlr^d'ho), MH'ji'^'nd 

Vancouver {vdn-koo'ver) 

vaquero (vd-kd'ro), cowboy, 


Ven'I Cre-a'tdr, a church hymn 

Ve'rtl Cruz (kroos) 

Verger {vdr-hdr') 

VIg'ge, Bl-ttun'dd 

vigilantes {vv-hi-lan'OB), mem- 
bers of vigilance committees 

Villa ipeeVydh), Vl-cgn'ta 

Vi-Jd-ta'd6r-Gcn-er-ai'., a chief 

Vizcaino {vea-kdre'no)^ Se-bfts- 

wlk'I-^p, rude Indian hut 

Xavier {M've'dr)^ San Francisco 

Ximenez (he-me^nes) 

Terl>a Buena (hwd'nd), a fra- 
grant plant; the early name 
of San Francisco 



Acapulco, 13| 35, 38. 

Adams, John Quincy, 324. 

AdminiatradoreSf 98. 

Admiralty Bay, '29. 

Adobe, 10, 86, 110, 166. 

Alaska, 27, 113. 

Alcaldes, 90, 121. 

Aleutian Islands, 113. 

Alta California, see Upper Cali- 

AUa Ccdifomia, The, 234, 270, 
294, 301. 

Alvarado, Governor, 134, 154,168. 

Amadis, Emperor, 19, 20. 

Amazons, 19, 20, 63. 

American flag, 136, 159, 172, 
176, 177, 182, 183, 186, 299. 

American River, 166, 188, 190. 

Anglo-Americans, 116. 

Anglo-Saxons, 323, 327. 

Apaches, 44. 

Arabs, 2. 

Arcane, J. B., 216, 218. 

Arce, Lieutenant, 174. 

Arctic Ocean, 28. 

Argonauts, 200, 206, 246, 266, 

Arguello, Don Luis, 121. 

Asia, 4, 113. 

Atchison, 286. 

Atolcy 90. 

Ayuntamiento, 106. 

Aztecs, 10, 41. 

Baffin's Bay, 27. 

Bahama Islands, 2. 

Baja California', see Lower Cali- 

Balboa, Vasoo Nunez de, 6, 7, 24. 

Barry, David, 284. 

Bartleson, Captain, 141, 148. 

Bear Flag, 175-177, 183, 298. 

Bear River, 188. 

Beaumont, Dimcan, 298, 299. 

Bell, John, 297. 

Bennett, Asabel, 212, 216, 218. 

Bennett, Nathaniel, 242. 

Bennett, Mrs. Sarah, 216. 

Benton, Thomas H., 169. 

Bering, Vitus, 28, 113. 

Bering Strait, 29, 113. 

Bidwell, John, 119, 139-161, 174, 

"Big Four," 291. 

Bigler, Henry W., 192, 193. 

Bigler,' John, 309. 

Bill of Rights, 320. 

Bodega Bay, 114, 116, 119, 136. 

Bonaparte, Napoleon, 119, 324. 

Borica, Diego de. 111, 121, 122. 

Branciforte, 107. 

Brannan, Sam, 267. 

Breckinridge, John C, 297, 298. 

Brier, Mrs. J. W., 213. 

Brighton, 168. 

Buchanan, James, 297. 

Buffaloes, 143, 144. 




Bulletin, The, 274. 
Burch, John C, 298. 
Burnett, Peter H., 238. 
Bums, Aaron, 280. 

CabaOeroa, 127. 

Cabo de Engano, 16. 

Cabrillo, Juan Rodrigues, 15, 16, 

18, 31. 
Calafia, 20. 

Calhoun, John C, 326. 
Calif omia: 
Admission to Union, 221, 223, 

224, 233, 239-242. 
American Conquest of, 133, 
136, 137, 162, 159, 169, 173- 
185, 221, 264. 
American Frontier, The, 202. 
Birthday of, 69. 
Boundary of, 233, 234. 
Capital of, 109, 121. 
Discovery of, 14, 16, 21, 31, 32. 
£1 Dorado, 195, 196, 199, 245, 

Empire State of the Pacific, 

160, 242, 332. 
Exploration of, 16-18, 29, 31- 

Golden, the, 23, 232, 297, 303. 
Government of, 201, 221-228, 
232, 238, 239, 242, 256, 264. 
Loyalty to the Union, 297-304. 
Mexico's Neglect of, 133-135, 

Missions in, 69, 71, 76-102. 
Name, 19, 21-23. 
Part of New Spain, 120-131, 

Prize, a, 133, 134, 185. 

California, cdnUnued. 

Queen of the Pacific, 241, 342. 

Resources of, 335-338, 340. 

Routes to, 202, 283. 

Russian Occupation, 114-119. 

Spanish Occupation, 103, 104, 
107, 108, 111. 

Spiritual Conquest, 63, 64, 69, 
73, 78, 94, 115, 116. 

Sympathy with South, 300, 
California Battalion of Mounted 

Riflemen, 184. 
California BiU, 241. 
California Hundred, 302, 303. 
California Republic, 177. 
California Stage Company, 285. 
California Star, The, 222, 284. 
California Volunteers, 303. 
Califomian, The, 197, 329, 330. 
Cape Bajo, 16. 
Cape Blanco, 18, 38. 
Cape Horn, 202, 284. 
Cape Mendocino (Cape Men- 

doza), 18, 27, 37, 58, 64. 
Cape of Good Hope, 4, 7, 34. 
Caribbean Sea, 4. 
Carmel Mission, eee San Carlos 

de Monterey. 
Carranco, Father, 59. 
Carson, Kit, 169. 
Carson River, 148, 286. 
Casey, James, 275» 276, 278. 
Castro, General Jos6, 171, 172, 

174, 183. 
Central America, 7. 
Central Pacific Raikoad, 289- 

Cham Ming, 305. 



Charles III, 60. 

Charles V, 10. 

Cheyennes, 142. 

Chile, 201. 

Chinatown, 310. 

Chinese, 2, 291, 305-314, 315, 

317, 320. 
Civil War, 160, 298-304, 328. 
Clay, Henry, 240. 
Coleman, William T., 268, 276, 

College of San Fernando, 60, 73, 

Coloma (CuUoomah), 158, 190. 
Colorado River, 212. 
Colton Hall, 230- 
Columbia River, 114, 147, 306. 
Columbus, 2-8, 24, 187, 188. 
Comandantey 108, 117, 118. 
Concurrent Resolution, 303. 
Congress, 179, 223, 224, 226, 229, 

238-241, 264, 313. 
Constitutional Convention: 

First, 226-238, 331, 332. 

Second, 319-322. 
Coolies, 308, 320. 
Cora, Charles, 276, 278. 
Cordoba, Alberto de. 111 
Coronado Islands, 16. 
Cortereal, Caspar, 24. 
CorteSy They 97. 
Cortez, Hernando, 9-14, 25. 
Council of the Indies, 121. 
Couriers, 284. 
Crawford, E. L., 319. 
Crespi, Father, 71, 76, 80. 
Crocker, Charles, 291, 292. 
Cuba, 8. 
Culverwell, Captain, 216, 218. 

Dakota Indians, 44. 

Dallas, Charles, 211. 

Dana, Richard Henry, 109. 

" Days of '49,"^255. 

De Mofras, 85. 

De Smet, Father, 141, 142, 

Death Valley, 214, 219, 220. 

Dewell, Benjamin, 176. 

Diez, Padre, 60. 

Dimmick, Kimball H., 232. 

Dolores Mission, see San Fran- 
cisco de Asis. 

Dominicans, 62, 73, 96. 

Donner, George, 162. 

Donner, Jacob, 162. 

Donner Lake, 166, 167. 

Donner Party, 159, 162-168. 

Douglas, Stephen A., 297. 

Drake, Sir Francis, 32-34. 

East Indies, 8. 

Echo Canon, 286. 

Education, provision for, 122, 

233, 339, 340. 
El Dorado Hotel, 203, 204. 
Elizabeth, Queen, 32. 
England, 34, 135, 137-139, 170, 

201, 325. 
Erhart Brothers, 216. 
Esplandian, 19. 

Fallon, Thomas, 183. 
Fandangoy 48, 126, 127, 333. ' 
Farwell, James D., 280. 
Feather River, 249, 257. 
Ferdinand, King, 2. 
Ferrelo, Bartolom^, 17-18. 
FiUmore, MiUard, 241, 242, 297. 



Fires, 258-263. 

Fitzpatrick, Captain, 141, 142. 

Floods, 257, 258. 

"Flush Times," 245-255, 307, 

Folsom, 288, 

Ford, Henry L., 177. 

Fort Bridger, 286. 

Fort Gunnybags, see Fort Vigi- 

Fort Hall, 145, 163. 

Fort Laramie, 144, 162. 

Fort Ross, 115, 117, 118, 135, 

Fort Vigilance, 278, 279. 

" Forty-niners," 208. 

France, 60, 135, 138, 201, 231, 

Franciscans, 60, 61, 71, 81, 118, 

Fremont, John Charles, 147, 156, 

169-176, 183-185, 239, 297. 
French, Mr., 217. 
Frijole, 254. 

Galvaez, Jos6, 66. 
Gama, Vasco da, 4, 5. 
Gambling, 205-206, 254. 
Game, 37, 106, 114, 123. 
Gamett, Major, 237. 
Gavilan Peak, 172. 
Geary Act, 313. 
GefUe de Razdn, 104. 
Germans, 201. 

Gilbert, Edward, 231, 232, 238. 
Gillespie, Archibald, 173. 
Gillespie Mission, 172, 173. 
Gilroy, John> 139. 

Gold: . 
Discovery of, 160, 187, 188, 

191-195, 198, 223, 327. 
Fever, 196, 197, 245, 246. 
In Civil War, 328. 
Lure of, 11, 20, 21, 63, 195, 

197, 245. 
Nuggets, 252, 253. 
ITield of, 198, 335. 
Golden Age, 122. 
Golden Era, 161. 
Golden Gate, 33, 51, 116, 195, 

242, 262, 267.- 
GcMen Hind, The, 32, 33. 
Great Salt Lake, 145, 146, 163, 

Green River, 211. 
Grijalva, 13. 
Gnngos, 123, 159, 180. 
Gulf of St. Lawrence, 27. 
Gutierrez, Father Joa6, 116. 
Gutierrez, Pablo, 188. 
Gwm, Senator William M., 239, 

Hangtown, 203. 

" Happy Hunting Ground," 44. 
Hasting's Cut-ofif, 163. 
Hensley, Samuel J., 177. 
Herald, The, 298. 
Hispano-Califomia, 115, 124- 

131, 156, 231, 326. 
Hittell, Theodore, 69, 209, 261. 
Hoge, Joseph P., 319. 
HolUday, Ben, 285. 
Hopkins, Mark, 291. 
"Hounds," 265-267. 
Hudson River, 28. 
Hudson's Bay, 27. 



Humboldt River, 147, 286. 
Humboldt Sink, 147. 
xlunt, Rev. Dwight H., 208. 
Huntington, Collis P., 291. 

Iceland, 2. 

Ide, WilUam B., 175, 176. 
Incas, 41. 

Immigrants, 187, 201. 
See also Argonauts. 
India, 3, 4, 7, 27, 296. 
Indian Ocean, 4. 
Indian uprisings, 302. 

Of California, 34, 41-52, 64, 

76, 79, 80, 97-102, 115, 154, 

156, 179, 200, 217, 221, 306, 

Of Lower California, 42, 43, 

56, 59, 60. 
Ireland, 231. 
Isabella, Queen, 2. 
Isthmus of Darien, 6. 

Jackson, Andrew, 136, 326. 
Jackson, Helen Hunt, 75, 82. 
James River, 28. 
Jansen, C. J., 268. 
Jayhawkers, 213. 
Jenkins, John, 270. 
Jesuits, 53-60, 61, 63, 73. 
Johnson, Joseph A., 319. 
Jones, Commodore, 136. 
Judah, Theodore D., 289. 
Juzgadoy 105. 

Kearney, Denis, 317. 
Keameyism, 318. 
Kearny, General, 185. 

King, James, 274-275. 
King, Thomas Butler, 229. 
Kino, Father, 55, 56, 58, 64, 

Klamath Country, 172. 
Klamath Indians, 45. 
"Knights of the Golden Circle," 


La Concepcwrif 13, 14. 

La Paz, 66. 

Labrador, 25. 

Language, English, 201, 330. 
Spanish, 201. 

Larkin, Thomas O., 171, 174, 

Lasuen, Father, 80. 

Leese, Jacob, 175. 

Legislative Assembly of San 
Francisco, 226. 

Leland Stanford Junior Univer- 
sity, 339. 

Lewis and Clark Expedition, 
136, 324. 

Lincohi, Abraham, 287, 297, 298, 

Lopez, Father, 80. 

Loreto Mission, 56, 58, 60. 

Los Angeles, 106, 107, 185, 188, 
212, 327, 335, 338. 

Louisiana Territory, 324. 

Lower (Baja) California: 
Discovery of, 14, 53. 
Exploration of, 14-16, 21, 53. 
Missions, 53-61, 63, 73, 94. 
Lynch Law, 271. 

McClutchen, William, 164, 165. 
McConneU, 298. 



McDougall, John, 238. 
McStay, George E., 319. 
Magellan, Fernando, 7, 8, 24. 
Maldonado, Lorenzo de, 25. 
Maldonado, Pedro Nunez, 12. 
''Manifest Destiny," 138, 201, 

Manly, William Lewis, 210-220. 
Marsh, Dr., 150. 
Marshall, John, 187-195, 327. 
Marysville, 256. 
Mason, Richard B., 226. 
MayordomoSf 87. 
• Mazatlan, 181. 

Mazuela, Juan de, 13. 
Mendoza, Diego de, 13. 
Merritt, Ezekiel, 174. 
Mervine, Captain, 182. 
Mexico, 9, 10, 12, 21, 27, 35, 53, 
66, 73, 98, 120, 121, 133- 
135, 137, 155, 157, 159, 179, 
180, 189, 201, 221, 305, 325. 
Law of Mexico, 202, 222. 
War with United States, 136, 
170, 172-176, 178, 185, 212, 
222, 224, 233, 326. 
Miners, 199, 200, 203, 246-248, 

Mining, 195, 201, 203, 207, 247- 

254, 337. 
Missions (in Upper California), 
61-102, 104, 118, 135. 
Architecture, 82-87. 
Downfall, 94, 98-102. 
bounding, 69, 78, 79, 82. 
Government, 91, 93. 
Influence of, 81, 101, 102. 
Life at, 87-91. 
Preservation, 76, 77. 

Missions (in Lower California}, 
53-^, 96. 
Abandoned, 60. 
Destruction of, 59. 
EstabUshed, 56, 57. 
Restoration, 59. 
Missouri River, 286, 289, 291. 
Modoc Indians, 45. 
Mongolians, 305, 306, 313. 
Monterey, 37, 66, 76, 77, 108- 
110, 112, 121, 136, 171, 173, 
177, 181, 182, 226, 230, 332. 
Monterey Bay, 16, 37, 78, 106. 
Monterey Mission, see San Car- 
los de Monterey. 
Montezuma, 10. 
Montgomery, Captain, 183. 
Mount Diablo, 51, 150. 

Napa, 45. 

Native Sons of the Golden West, 

Navidad, 15. 

Neophytes, 87, 89, 99, 100. 
New Albion, 34. 

New Helvetia, 154, 157, 160, 188. 
New Spain, 10, 15, 35, 66, 73, 120, 

New World, 3, 5, 9, 24, 41, 71. 
Newfoundland, 27. 
Nicaragua, 202. 

"No-Government Period," 223. 
Northmen, 2, 188. 
Northwest Passage, 3, 24, 27, 29. 
Northwest Territory, 27, 324. 

Oak of Vizcaino, 37. 
Occident, 30, 323. 
Old World, 3. 



Omaha, 290. 
Omnibus Bill, 240. 
Oregon, 18, 33, 289, 324, 325. 
Orient, 5, 30, 323. 

Pacific Ocean, 2, 5-7, 14, 24, 28, 

32, 53, 323. 
Pacific Railroad, 283-296, 309, 

Pacific Republic, 298, 299. 
Palo Alto, 340. 

Battle of, 181. 
Palou, Father, 71. 
Panama, 7. 

Isthmus of, 202, 284. 
Panama Canal, 30, 338. 
Panamint Mountains, 214. 
Parkado, 51. 
Parker House, 204. 
Payeras, Father Mariano, 116. 
Pelican, They 32. 
Peralta, Don Luis, 327. 
Perez, Juan, 66. 
Peru, 53, 201. 
Peter the Great, 28. 
Philadelphia House, 260. 
Philip II, 27. 
Philip III, 34, 39. 
Philip V, 56. 

PhiUppine Islands, 7, 24, 35. 
Phoenix, 262, 263, 335. 
Piccolo, Father, 57. 
Pico, Pio, 121. 
Pierce, FrankUn, 297. 
Pinole, 90. 

Pioneers, 231, 236, 267. 
Pious Fund, 95, 96. 
Placerville, 286. 
Platte Reserve, 140. 

Platte River, 142, 143, 162, 286. 

Plaza, 104. 

Plymouth, 32, 34. 

Pobladar, 104, 105, 108. 

Point Pinos (Point of Pines), Ift, 

Point Reyes, 33. 
Polk, James K., 137, 138, 178, 

Pony Express, 286, 287. 
Chinese, 310. 
Indian, 50. 

Of California, 200, 201, 221, 
331, 332, 335. 
PortoM, Caspar de, 31, 60, 66- 

69, 76, 107, 120. 
Portsmouth, The, 183. 
Portugal, 4, 16, 25, 60. 
Potomac River, 28. 
Prairie schooner, 159, 202. 
Preachers, pioneer, 208. 
Prefects, 121. 
Presidio, 64, 103, 108-112! 
Price, R. M., 331. 
Promontory, 292. 
Prospectors, 194, 248. 
Provincial Governor, 108. 
Provindaa Intemas, 120. 
Provisional Government, 225. 
Prudon, Victor, 175. 
Pueblo Indians, 10, 41, 85. 
Pueblos, 64, 103-107. 
Puget Sound, 27, 29. 

Rancheria, 47, 97, 103. 

Ranchero, 126. 

Reed, Captain, 302. 

Reed, James F., 162, 164, 1^, 



Reed's Peak, 51. 

" Regulators/' «ec " Hounds/' 

Resaca de la Palma, 181. 

Rezanof, Count, 114. 

Riley, General Bennet, 226-229. 

Rio Grande, 181. 

Rivera, Fernando, 66, 68. 

Roberts, Samuel, 267. 

Rodeo, 123, 126, 127. 

Rogers, John, 215, 217, 218. 

Routes to Califomia, 202, 283. 

Royce, Josiah, 275. 

Ruelle, Baptiste, 188. 

Russia, 63, 66, 135, 325. 

Russian-American Fur Com- 
pany, 114, 115. 

Russian River, 51, 115. 

Russians in Califomia, 63, 66, 
113-119, 154. 

Sacramento, 119, 155, 160, 161, 
189, 206, 246, 256, 257, 284, 
286, 287, 290, 295, 319. 

Sacramento River, 155, 188, 257. 

Sacramento Valley, 171. 

Sacramento Valley Railroad, 

St. Francis of Assisi, 61, 102. 

St. Louis, 141, 169. 

Salt Lake City, 284, 286. 

Salvatiera, Juan Maria, 55, 56, 
58, 95. 

San Antonio, 284. 

San Antonio, The, 66-68, 77. 

San Bernardino Mountains, 216. 

San Buenaventura Mission, 79. 

San Carlos, The, 66-68. 

San Carlos de Monterey Mission, 
78, 79, 109. 

San Diego, 66, 76, 108, 110-112, 

120, 185. 
San Diego, The, 35. 
San Diego Bay, 16, 31, 36. 
San Diego Mission, 39, 69, 81, 

100, 107, 115. 
San Domingo, 9. 
San Fernando, College of, 60, 73, 

San Fernando Mission, 219. 
San Francisco, 34, 108, 110, 112, 

114, 137, 183, 202, 205; 225, 

246, 295, 301, 302, 310, 319, 

330-332, 335. 
Fires in, 256-263. 
Vigilance Committees, 264- 

San Francisco Bay, 17, 33, 76, 

174, 328. 
San Francisco de Asis (Dolores 

Mission), 45, 110. 
San Francisco Xavier Mission, 

San Joaquin River, 257. 
San Joaquin Valley, 149, 171, 

San Jo86, 106, 107, 123, 183, 226, 

238, 278, 302. 
San Juan, 51. 

San Luis Obispo Mission, 85. 
San Luis Rey Mission, 86. 
San FasQual, 185. 
San Pedro, 338. 
San Pedro Bay, 37, 338. 
San Rafael Mission, 116. 
" Sand-lot orators," 317. 
Sandwich Islands, 201. 
Santa Barbara, 108, 111, 112. 
Santa Barbara Islands, 17. 



Santa Catalina, 36. 

Santa Clara County, 299. 

Santa Clara Valley, 106. 

Santa Cruz, 15, 107. 

Santa Cruz Bay, 14. 

Santa EUa, 55. 

Santa Inez Mission, 94, 115. 

Santa Tomas, 13. 

Santiago River, 13. 

Sapling Grove, 151. 

Sdvannahf The, 182. 

Scotland, 231. 

Scott's Bluffs, 144. 

Seal of CaUfomia, 237, 238. * 

Seal of San Francisco, 262, 

Semple, Dr. Robert, 230. 
Serra, Father Junipero, 31, 66- 

Shasta Indians, 45. 
Sherwood, T. J., 319. 
Siberia, 113. 
Sierra Nevada Mountains, 148, 

149, 158, 159, 165, 166, 189, 
• 234,286,289,291. 
Sir Francis Drake Bay, 34. 
Sitka, 114. 
Slavery, 178, 179, 224, 233, 240, 

Slidell, John, 178. 
Sloat, Commodore John D., 177, 

181-183, 185. 
Smith, Edwin F., 319. 
Smith, Jedediah, 139. 
Smith, General Persifor, 229. 
Snyder, John, 164. 
SobrarUey 157. 
Society of Jesus, 54, 55. 
Soda Springs, 142; 144. 

Sonoma, 45, 58, 81, 174, 175, 

Sonoma Mission, 116. 
South Pass, 286, 289. 
South Sea, 5, 24, 27. 
Southeast Passage, 4. 
Spain, 1, 4-^, 9, 11, 16, 24, 28, 34, 

55, 56, 59-61, 63, 64, 78, 94, 

96-98, 103, 104, 107, 108, 

115, 121, 154, 201, 231, 323, 

Spanish California, «ee EUspano- 

Springfield, 162, 167. 
Stagecoach, 284, 285. 
Stanford, Leland, 291, 298. 
Stanislaus River, 149, 150. 
Stanton, C. T., 164, 165. 
" Starved Camp," 167. 
State Constitution: 

First, 226, 231-236. 

Second, 315-322. 
State Legislature, 303, 304, 312, 

315, 321. 
"States, The" 179, 283, 312. 
Stockton, 206, 298. 
Stockton, Commodore Robert 

F., 183, 185. 
Straits of Anian, 24-29, 33, 64. 
Stuart, James, 271. 
Sub-prefects, 121. 
Sunday at the mines, 252, 253. 
Sutter, John A., 119, 152-161, 

166, 174, 189-194, 231. 
Sutter's Fort, 152-161, 165-167, 

173, 188, 189-195. 
Sweetwater, 144. 
Swift, Granville P., 177. 
Switzerland, 231. 



Tamaral, Pather, 69. 
Taylor, Bayard, 204, 231. 
Taylor, Rev. William, 208, 247. 
Taylor, (General) Zachary, 181, 

Tehachapi Mountains, 216. 
Tehauntepec, 13. 
Temeacal, 47. 
Texas, 136, 137, 324. 
Thomas, W. H., 123. 
Thompson, Mr., 137. 
Tiles, 85. 
Todd, BiU, 176. 
Tortillas, 90. 
Truckee River, 165. 
Tucker, R. P., 166. 
Tulare Valley, 212. 
Tyler, John, 326. 

Ugarte, Father, 58. 

Ulloa, Francisco de, 15. 

Union Pacific Raih^ad, 289-291, 

Universities, 233, 339, 340. 
Upper (Alta) California, 14, 21, 

31, 61, 103. 
See also California. 
Urdaneta, Andres de, 25. 

Vallejo, Guadalupe, 122. , 

Vallejo, Mariano G., 117, 174, 

175, 180, 193, 231. 
Vancouver, Captain, 109, 111. 
Vaqu&roj 126, 127. 
Venegas, Father, 43. 
Vera Cruz, 9, 60, 73. 
Verger, Father, 71. 

Viceroy of New Spain, 15, 35, 38, 

Vigilance Committee of 1851, 

. 255, 262, 264-273, 277. 
Vigilance Committee of 1856, 

Great, 273-281. 
Villa, Vincenta, 66. 
Visitador-General, 66. 
Vizcaino, Don Sebastian, 35-39, 

Walker, Chief, 212. 
Walker River, 148. 
Wasatch Mountains, 286. 
Washington, George, 122. 
Washington Guards, 268. 
WatUng, 2. 
Weber's Canon, 163. 
Webster, Daniel, 137, 324. 
Western Emigration Society, 

Western Hemisphere, 5, 188. 
Wikiups, 47. 

Willey, Rev. S. H., 208, 229. 
Wihnington, 338. 
Wolfe, General Jiames, 324. 
Wood, Dr. William M., 181. 
Workingmen's Party, 317, 319. 
Wright, George W., 238. 

Ximenez, Fortuno, 14. 

Yerba Buena, 110, 183. 
Yuba River, 257. 

Zacatula, 11, 12. 


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